Matisse and San Francisco

By Janet Bishop

Henri Matisse’s radical aesthetic vocabulary had a lasting impact on the modern art world and was embraced by forward-looking collectors in the San Francisco Bay Area. Celebrating the longstanding enthusiasm for Matisse in the region, Matisse in San Francisco traces four decades of the artist’s career through a selection of paintings, drawings, and bronzes from local collections. Important pictures from the artist’s Fauve period are featured along with portraits, still lifes, landscapes, seascapes, and studies of the human form, showcasing the diversity of Matisse’s subject matter as well as his bold and vibrant use of color. An essay by Janet Bishop, twenty-nine colorful plates, and comparative images combine to illuminate San Francisco’s status as one of the most significant repositories of Matisse’s work outside of Paris.


Janet Bishop is curator of painting and sculpture at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). She served as one of the lead curators for The Steins Collect: Matisse, Picasso, and the Parisian Avant-Garde, which reunited the collections of Gertrude Stein and her family and was presented at SFMOMA, the Grand Palais in Paris, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

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