Henri Matisse, the great French Impressionist painter, is an inspiration to me.
Did you know toward the end of his life, Matisse was bedridden due to a life-threatening illness, no longer able to paint; and yet he persevered as an artist? In the midst of what might have been a death blow to many, he reinvented himself as well as his reputation by creating an entirely new field of art. He began painting with scissors. Matisse’s cut-out art is some of the most explosively, alive, joyful, grand and exuberant art of his time. Many believe this art form was the pinnacle of his achievement.
It is still a life-affirming experience for all who see it.
He compared cutting to flying. Isn’t that an inspirational vision? Just think his career as he had known it was in shambles he soared because his newest creations had him flying in the art world yet again.
His grandson, Paul Matisse said that his grandfather seemed to be “having the time of his life during this late period of his life.”*
What a picture of reinvention and the drive to remain relevant. How are you when your career is boxed in through happenstance outside your control? Don’t forget to take a leaf out of Matisse’s philosophy book: “An artist should never be a prisoner of himself… Prisoner of style…. Prisoner of reputation…. Prisoner of success.”
If you are not reinventing, start investing your time in doing so. It will pay off
I thought you might enjoy watching this short Youtube video of Henri Matisse as he paints with scissors.
Let me know if this has you committing to reinvention. Love to have a dialogue with you regarding this imperative issue. Have a great day!
*CBS Sunday Morning, January 11, 2015