Henri Matisse

The leader of the Fauvist movement around 1900, Matisse pursued the expressiveness of colour throughout his career. His subjects were largely domestic or figurative, and a distinct Mediterranean verve presides in the treatment. (born Dec. 31, 1869, Le Cateau, Picardy, France—died Nov. 3, 1954Nice), artist often regarded as the most important French painter of the 20th century.