Matisse The Dance

An Enchanted Excursion

Matisse

Today is a remarkable day in a a series of remarkable days within the scope of a remarkable year. All time is composed of moments, one breath at a time. My day has brought sadness, learning I did not get the job for which I had recently interviewed. Two subsequent mishaps or accidents that occurred within this past half hour signaled to me that I am not fully feeling my emotions: sadness. anger, disappointment, fear, and whatever else has not come to the surface. It is interesting that while intellectually getting the news resulted in muted feelings, hurting my foot and spilling my lunch on the floor triggered quite strong theatrics!

I wanted to have a new job going into a new year, some way forward. Yet I am more at peace with the knowledge that I do not always get what I want when I want it, or in the form I want it, or sometimes not at all. But to quote Mick Jagger ” You get what you need.” and we always do, whether our ego agrees or approves. Everything truly does happen for a reason and rarely for the reason you think. I am starting to see this more clearly now.

I have much to be grateful for and have manifested quite a few unexpected goodies, especially since September. In fact I was granted another full scholarship to study at the Barnes, this time for a course I suggested as a recommendation when completing a student survey. The topic is Seurat and Pointillism, a match made in heaven as this is my favorite painter and technique. Also, it is important to note I saw the course offering on my Facebook feed. I was not seeking anything out, quite content to revel in Matisse a while longer. My point is that I tend to attract more of what I want when I am not putting much energy into acquiring it. I have seen this pattern operate more than a few times in my life, validating both my natal and human design chart emphasis on receiving through invitation or initiation by others. I have become a bit more at ease with entering the flow and focusing less on “productivity. ”

So let’s shift gears to celebrate a blessing that resulted in an extraordinary afternoon back in October. At the time, I considered that my trip to the Barnes Foundation would be an advance Birthday celebration. Looking back, it truly was manna from the Divine, a thank you for agreeing to live through 60 years of 3D smoke and mirrors, illusion and confusion for all of us congregated here collectively now. Admission is free for all students, including parking, so other than a few dollars for lunch, it was a present a few weeks early.

I am appreciative of the following:

A chance to drive to center city in the throes of fall foliage.

Walking around a beloved landmark of culture, taking in Matisse and the abundance of paintings , furniture, and other creations with fresh eyes.

Having a pleasant extended conversation with a live person, a kind man who works at the Barnes and guided me to the Matisse rooms. We discussed art, the Barnes classes, and I felt alive again in a way that I have not in months. 

Plenty of time and space to look at the art, which is unusual for a museum of this stature.

Eating outside in a lovely outdoor space, seeing people while I eat! The meal was simple but delicious, a warm turkey swiss sandwich on a croissant with green goddess dressing that I could have bathed in. It was that yummy! Dessert was a pumpkin cupcake with cream cheese icing that was soft and light and scrumptious. 

Other than the required mask wearing and other precautions, it felt normal to roam around this awesome place, surrounded by beauty and people who also love art. This was remarkable at the time and still is today. Currently the Barnes is closed up again.

Seurat

I have included a few Matisse quotes given to us from the course instructor that align so well with my own sensibilities.

“The artist or poet possesses an inner light which transforms objects
to make a new world of them – sensitive, organized, a living world which
is in itself an infallible sign of divinity, a reflection of divinity”

“The attempts to possess the light and space in which I live gave me
the desire to see myself with a different space and light, which would
allow me to grasp more profoundly, the space and light in which I do
live, if only to become more conscious of them”

“I have always been taken by the character of light, which bathes objects
of my contemplation, and often I asked myself during my meditations,
what would be the particular light in the South Seas.”

Matisse

Fun Matisse Facts:

He often featured windows in paintings, adding a bit of the outdoors into the room.

He suffered from anxiety and insomnia.

While he lived in France, travel was a delight and adventure.

Matisse’s background in textiles lent itself to featuring fabrics in many of his works and the use of cutouts later in his career.

Bold colors mixed with patterns often appear in Matisse’s paintings.

Over time his style evolved from wider brush strokes and more undefined features ( on portraits) to finer strokes and more realistic figures.

 

Please enjoy a few more images from my visit. I wish you could have been with me in person, but am grateful we can share these moments virtually.

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