Odalisque à la culotte rouge

Henri Matisse
Odalisque à la culotte rouge
entre 1924 et 1925
huile sur toile
H. 50 ; L. 61 cm avec cadre H. 68 ; L. 78 ; P. 8 cm
Succession H. Matisse © RMN-Grand Palais (Musée de l'Orangerie) / Michel Urtado / Benoit Touchard
Henri Matisse (1869 - 1954)

In the Odalisque with Red Trousers, the decorative motifs invade the pictorial space. On the right, two panels with large flower motifs close down the space and underline the flatness of the painting. On the other hand, the curiously disproportionate side table is there to indicate the distance between the sofa and this decorative background. On the left, there is a glimpse through the panels to the far end of the apartment, where we can see a chest of drawers with two decorative objects on top. Two white bands emphasise the presence of the wall hangings and their verticality. The curves of the odalisque and the diagonal of the sofa, gently angled towards the spectator, break with the verticals of the background.
The face of the model is reduced to the essentials: a few features brushed in. A few accessories: a white tunic, red Moorish trousers embroidered with gold and some jewellery are enough to conjure up the Orient of dreams.