About the Class
Ellen McBreen, co-curator of the acclaimed exhibition Matisse in the Studio (Boston and London, 2017) brings to light the deeply personal objects that so often found their way into Matisse’s paintings. Furniture from Tunisia, an Andalusian vase, figural sculpture from the various African traditions that he admired—all were key elements in Matisse’s diverse “palette of objects,” and many can be seen in canvases at the Barnes. What happens when Matisse translates his favorite 3D objects into paint? Why did he combine all these seemingly disparate cultural traditions?
McBreen is an associate professor of the history of art at Wheaton College in Massachusetts. She was a co-curator of the 2017 exhibition Matisse in the Studio and wrote Matisse’s Sculpture: The Pinup and the Primitive (Yale University Press, 2014). She is currently serving as a curatorial advisor for Migrating Objects at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, opening February 2020.