Sunday, Oct. 2 at 4 p.m.—On Sunday, Oct. 2, pianist and composer Chris Bakriges is joined by bassist Shigefumi Tomita to perform music inspired by the art of Henri Matisse that were collectively published in 1947 as “Jazz.” The performance, “Teaching the Eye to Hear: Musical Reflections on Henri Matisse’s Jazz,” will be held at ArtisTree Community Arts Center in South Pomfret. Tickets are $20.
In 1941 the artist Henri Matisse found himself ill, bedridden, and unable to pick up a paint brush. He found, however, that he could maneuver scissors through prepared sheets of brightly colored paper. He referred to this technique as “painting with scissors.” Among his first adventures with paper cutouts was a book called “Jazz”, which Matisse prepared in 1942 and published in 1947. The book, containing 20 color plates as well as his written thoughts, was initially only printed in 100 copies. Matisse viewed jazz as a “chromatic and rhythmic improvisation.” The title “Jazz” evoked for Matisse the idea of a structure of rhythm and repetition broken by the unexpected action of improvisations. He wrote, “There are wonderful things in real jazz, the talent for improvisation, the liveliness, the being at one with the audience.”
Both the text and the iconic cutouts, which will be projected during the performance, inspired pianist and composer Chris Bakriges and bassist Shigefumi Tomita to musically reflect on Matisse’s work. Matisse used the energy of a still young musical idiom called jazz in enticing the art world to “teach the eye to hear.”
ArtisTree is located at 2095 South Pomfret Road, Pomfret. For more info, visit artistreevt.org.
Photo courtesy of ArtisTree Community Arts Center