Back in 1986 the National Gallery of Art mounted a beautiful exhibit of Matisse’s paintings from that period when he lived in Nice. Mom and I saw the show together. It’s hard to believe that was a quarter century ago! I was looking through the catalog while talking to her on the phone today. She didn’t remember our visiting the exhibit, but I reminded her that we did. We had wandered through that enormous exhibit like two ladies of leisure. I remember well the lazy way we paused in front of pictures and enjoyed the beautiful colors, the clear light of those paintings, and the feeling of elegance and serenity those paintings evoke. It was as though peace and calm and quiet orderly life might go on forever.
While I was talking to mom, I made a pen drawing of one of Matisse’s exotic young women. They look out from the pictures with a dewy youth that is eternal. Today’s “phone conversation drawing.”