Installation view, Matisse: The Sinuous Line, 2021. Photo by Mitro Hood.

Matisse: The Sinuous Line


The second iteration of the inaugural exhibition in the new Ruth R. Marder Center for Matisse Studies continues the exploration of Henri Matisse’s graceful use of line with a new selection of works on paper from the BMA’s collection.

Inspired by a masterpiece of line and movement, The Serpentine (1909), the exhibition features several of Matisse’s explorations of the reclining figure in bronze, which show him moving from a classical style toward a more streamlined treatment of the body. The same theme can be seen in these pen and ink drawings, aquatint, and innovative etchings and lithographs.

Although best known as a painter, Matisse’s ability to convey his models’ personality with just a few lines is part of his great contribution as a draftsman and printmaker.

Curated by Katy Rothkopf, The Anne and Ben Cone Memorial Director of The Ruth R. Marder Center for Matisse Studies and Senior Curator of European Painting and Sculpture.