Sister Wendy’s writings on Matisse

I have long loved the color and passion found in the art of Henri Matisse. In Sister Wendy’s Story of Painting, she writes that Matisse “produced some of the most powerful beauty ever painted.” Sister Wendy explains that this 20th century master found serenity in his art.

“He spoke of his art as being like ‘a good armchair’ – a ludicrously inept comparison for such a brilliant man – but his art was a respite, a reprieve, a comfort to him.”

Sister Wendy became an unlikely celebrity in the 1990’s when she produced a series of art histories for public television. If you didn’t catch her, she is quite knowledgeable and funny. Enthusiasm for art shines through in this Carmelite nun’s writing. I’m happy to sit in my armchair looking at the brilliance of Matisse.


  • Laura K. Aiken
    May 2, 2008 - 7:15 pm | Permalink

    I am with Sister Wendy. I love Matisse and his colors. Did you know his great granddaughter is an artist too! Sophie Matisse. He had a great sense of humor too or that’s what I read. Best of luck.

  • Susan from Sisters, Oregon
    May 4, 2008 - 10:54 am | Permalink

    Thanks for telling me about Matisse’s great granddaughter! I learned this young New York artist likes to paint famous paintings and leave out the people – so she did Mona Lisa without Mona and American Gothic without the farm couple just the pitch fork. A contemporary artist with a playful side – what a kick!

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