Improvising Matisse

The Matisse Jazz Project is music inspired by the iconic cut paper collages of Henri Matisse published in 1947 as Jazz. The twenty pieces composed by pianist Christopher Bakriges correspond to each of the Matisse Jazz cutouts and his writings. Matisse viewed jazz as a “chromatic and rhythmic improvisation” and evoked the idea of a structure of rhythm and repetition broken by the unexpected action of improvisations. Matisse wrote, “There are wonderful things in real jazz, the talent for improvisation, the liveliness, the being at one with the audience.” Bakriges leaves his own stunningly touching and virtuosic homage to the legacy of a leading figure in modern art.

Listen:

Left: Christopher Bakriges,  by Emmy Walden Fox Photography;  Right: Photo of Matisse (Succession H. Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)
Left: Christopher Bakriges, by Emmy Walden Fox Photography; Right: Photo of Matisse (Succession H. Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Reviews:

“I was almost breathless as I listened to the works, sometimes melodious, other times, cutting edge like the blades of scissors…to this day, I carry the music with me, still not believing the work was improvisational.”

–Carol Dine, Author, Van Gogh in Poems             Read more reviews here

Hi Res Images of The Matisse Jazz Project Family of Musicians:
Click any photo below to access the high resolution version

Video:

All Bakriges photos by Emmy Walden Fox Photography
Succession H. Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Matisse Paris Match via Getty Images