fauvism [fō′viz΄əm]
Fr fauvisme < fauve, wild beast, orig. adj., fawn-colored, dun < OFr < Frank * falw < Gmc * falwa, FALLOW2
[often F-] a French expressionist movement in painting at the beginning of the 20th cent., involving Matisse, Derain, Vlaminck, etc.: it was characterized by bold distortion of form and the use of strong, pure color
fauve [fōv]
n., adj.

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fau·vism (fōʹvĭz'əm) n.
An early-20th-century movement in painting begun by a group of French artists and marked by the use of bold, often distorted forms and vivid colors.
  [French fauvisme, from fauve, wild animal, from fauve, wild, reddish-yellow, from Old French falve, reddish-yellow, from Frankish *falw-. See pel-1.   fauʹvist adj.

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Style of painting that flourished in France с 1898–1908, characterized by the use of intensely vivid colour and turbulent emotionalism.

The dominant figure of the group was Henri Matisse; others were André Derain, Maurice de Vlaminck, Raoul Dufy, Georges Braque, and Georges Rouault. The name derives from the judgment of a critic who visited their first exhibit in Paris (1905) and referred to the artists disparagingly as "les fauves" ("wild beasts"). They were influenced by the masters of Post-Impressionism, Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin. Fauvism was a transitional phase for most of the artists, who by 1908, having renewed their interest in Paul Cézanne's vision of order and structure, abandoned Fauvism for Cubism. Matisse alone continued on the course he had pioneered.

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▪ French painting
 style of painting that flourished in France around the turn of the 20th century. Fauve artists used pure, brilliant colour aggressively applied straight from the paint tubes to create a sense of an explosion on the canvas.

      The Fauves painted directly from nature, as the Impressionists (Impressionism) had before them, but Fauvist works were invested with a strong expressive reaction to the subjects portrayed. First formally exhibited in Paris in 1905, Fauvist paintings shocked visitors to the annual Salon d'Automne; one of these visitors was the critic Louis Vauxcelles, who, because of the violence of their works, dubbed the painters fauves (“wild beasts”).

      The leader of the group was Henri Matisse (Matisse, Henri), who had arrived at the Fauve style after experimenting with the various Post-Impressionist (Post-Impressionism) approaches of Paul Gauguin (Gauguin, Paul), Vincent van Gogh (Gogh, Vincent van), and Georges Seurat. Matisse's studies led him to reject traditional renderings of three-dimensional space and to seek instead a new picture space defined by movement of colour. He exhibited his famous Woman with the Hat (1905) at the 1905 exhibition. In this painting, brisk strokes of colour—blues, greens, and reds—form an energetic, expressive view of the woman. The crude paint application, which left areas of raw canvas exposed, was appalling to viewers at the time.

      The other major Fauvists were André Derain (Derain, André), who had attended school with Matisse in 1898–99, and Maurice de Vlaminck (Vlaminck, Maurice de), who was Derain's friend. They shared Matisse's interest in the expressive function of colour in painting, and they first exhibited together in 1905. Derain's Fauvist paintings translate every tone of a landscape into pure colour, which he applied with short, forceful brushstrokes. The agitated swirls of intense colour in Vlaminck's works are indebted to the expressive power of van Gogh.

      Three young painters from Le Havre, France, were also influenced by Matisse's bold and vibrant work. Othon Friesz found the emotional connotations of the bright Fauve colours a relief from the mediocre Impressionism he had practiced; Raoul Dufy (Dufy, Raoul) developed a carefree ornamental version of the bold style; and Georges Braque (Braque, Georges) created a definite sense of rhythm and structure out of small spots of colour, foreshadowing his development of Cubism. Albert Marquet, Matisse's fellow student at the École des Beaux-Arts in the 1890s, also participated in Fauvism, as did the Dutchman Kees van Dongen (Dongen, Kees van), who applied the style to depictions of fashionable Parisian society. Other painters associated with the Fauves were Georges Rouault, Henri Manguin, Charles Camoin, and Jean Puy.

      For most of these artists, Fauvism was a transitional, learning stage. By 1908 a revived interest in Paul Cézanne (Cézanne, Paul)'s vision of the order and structure of nature had led many of them to reject the turbulent emotionalism of Fauvism in favour of the logic of Cubism. Matisse alone pursued the course he had pioneered, achieving a sophisticated balance between his own emotions and the world he painted.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • fauvism — [fō′viz΄əm] n. [Fr fauvisme < fauve, wild beast, orig. adj., fawn colored, dun < OFr < Frank * falw < Gmc * falwa, FALLOW2] [often F ] a French expressionist movement in painting at the beginning of the 20th cent., involving Matisse,… …   English World dictionary

  • Fauvism — [ Henri Matisse, Portrait of Madame Matisse (The green line), 1905, Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen, Denmark] Les Fauves (French for The Wild Beasts ) were a short lived and loose grouping of early 20th century Modern artists whose works… …   Wikipedia

  • fauvism — noun Usage: often capitalized Date: 1922 a movement in painting typified by the work of Matisse and characterized by vivid colors, free treatment of form, and a resulting vibrant and decorative effect • fauvist noun or adjective, often… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • fauvism — noun An artistic movement of the last part of the 19th century which emphasized spontaneity and the use of extremely bright colors …   Wiktionary

  • fauvism — fauv|is|m [ˈfəuvızəm US ˈfou ] n [U] [Date: 1900 2000; : French; Origin: fauvisme, from fauve wild animal ] a style of painting that uses pure bright colours, which was developed in the early 20th century …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • fauvism — see FALLOW …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

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