DIY Matisse

A souvenir from one of Tate's biggest exhibitions, featuring James Cropper papers

2014’s hit exhibition gathering together the influential, colourful cut out works of French artist, Henri Matisse at Tate Modern, London introduced thousands of art-lovers to his remarkable body of later work. Amongst the range of souvenirs available to aspiring artists visiting ‘Cut Outs’ (17 April – 7 September 2014) was a specially produced pad of colourful papers, produced by James Cropper, offering young visitors the chance to imitate Matisse’s remarkable cut out works at home.

Renowned for being a master of colour, Matisse turned to the radical use of cut paper towards the end of his career as poor health prevented him from painting. The results were startling, revealing a joyfully primitive exploration of shape and colour and beautiful depictions of human and animal forms using nothing more than coloured paper and a pair of scissors. Their sophisticated simplicity makes them amongst his most celebrated works.

The souvenir pad of 10 coloured papers were carefully chosen to resemble the palette Matisse used, each sheet produced on Vanguard, one of James Cropper’s most popular ranges, now available in a 32 ready-to-order colours. The A3 sheets, including four of each colour, provided a blank canvas for those having left the exhibition inspired by the works of an undoubted master of modern art.

The Tate Matisse ‘Cut Outs’ A3 Workbook was produced for Tate by King & McGaw, suppliers of paper products to many of the UK’s leading galleries.