The Music Lesson, Two Women Seated on a Divan, 1921

This painting is softened by the cool tone of the color and the sweeping gesture of Matisse’s brush. The forms of the women are simplified into swirling forms of color, with a few strokes of black paint marking the simple features of their faces. The glance of the two women and the line delineating the two back walls draw the eye to the open book hatched with horizontal black lines. The lines, possibly representing music staffs, are interrupted by the bow and neck of the woman’s violin, making music the central focus of the work.

Original Medium: oil on canvas

Original Size: 21 5/8 x 25 13/16 in


Location: Baltimore Museum of Art