Matisse: Radical Invention 1913-1917, By Stephanie d'Allessandro & John Elderfield

It's not cheap but the catalogue for last year's big Matisse show in Chicago and New York is revelatory about the most productive period of the 20th century's other artistic colossus.

Works like Bathers by a River, Interior with Goldfish and The Piano Lesson left Picasso gasping. With 650 illustrations, this groundbreaking exposition includes related works, historical background and scientific scrutiny of Matisse's struggle on the canvas.

We learn that analysis supports Apollinaire's view of Bowl of Oranges ("Like the orange, his work is the fruit of dazzling light"): "The reason that these fruits dazzle is that they are embedded with areas of mod-ulated silver-grey pigment."

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