Henri Matisse: The Cut Outs @ Tate Modern

“Never repeat the David Hockney at RA” is Hubbie’s & my mantra we recite to each other when a major art exhibition hits the town. As you have probably guessed it from our mantra, we missed the Hockney’s retrospective show at the Royal Academy in 2012. Every time I expressed my desire for the show, Hubbie kept on putting it off by saying ‘Let’s wait until the show becomes less popular’. A few months passed as such and when we finally agreed to visit, it was already a final week and no ticket was available. Gah!! We learnt our lesson and vowed never to miss another show willy-nilly.

So when Nicholas Serota, director of the Tate galleries, announced that the next major exhibition following their immensely successful Paul Klee retrospective would be featuring Henri Matisse, we were determined not to miss the boat!

The Sunday during Easter Bank Holiday was a wet one…


Turbine Hall was filled with a ripple of excited chats by visitors who were free from umbrellas and macs…


Matisse’s The Cut Outs was our primary objective, however, we had an even more urgent desire to fulfil… LUNCH!
A queue in front of the ground floor cafe was too long for my empty stomach which was nearly keeling over. Therefore we made a beeline for the lift and climbed up to a top floor restaurant.

A view of St.Paul’s from the window of the restaurant heaving with lunchtime diners…


We were literally the last people to have lunch there for the day! A couple queuing right behind us was told by a receptionist that the kitchen was closed for lunch and therefore they could offer afternoon tea menu only. I hope we weren’t looking too smug then.

Yayoi Kusama’s art graced the wall of the dining room…


Yippee, my fish & chips!!


I highly recommend the fish & chips at the Tate. Either at their ground floor cafe or top floor restaurant, it is seriously good. The batter is crispy outside and fluffy inside but non-greasy while the fish was moist and succulent.
Since knowing this fish & chips was the last one out of the kitchen, it tasted even better.

With our stomachs comfortably lined, we headed to the gallery on the second floor…


The exhibition was not as packed as we feared. Most of the works on display were large and therefore they were even better to be viewed from the distance. We hired audio guides and sauntered around the galleries, feasting our eyes on Matisse’s colourful creations.

After Matisse, we also viewed Richard Hamilton’s retrospective show too…


I could see how a certain YBA artist inspired by his work. However, it was a little too similar and I found it rather disturbing.

We also admired works by Dan Flavin…


I saw his collection when I visited Chinati Foundation in Marfa, Texas. One of his installations was displayed in the town, utilising an unoccupied shop space. It was a strangely alluring sight that coloured fluorescent tubes in pink, blue, green and yellow were shimmering and the light was bleeding out from the window and onto ordinary everyday surroundings of the American suburb.

We were a little tired so moved on to the members room for tea & cake….


I had a raspberry macaroon and a pot of Darjeeling….


Tate Modern’s new extension under construction…


Hubbie and I speculated how this Herzog de Meuron’s addition would turn out to be in 2016. Hubbie was a little concerned about the slanted walls, reasoning it wouldn’t be great for hanging arts. I am sure there must be a plenty more of vertical walls in this massive extension.

Broken lines on their concrete structure…


Are they for hanging wall claddings?
I love ogling buildings especially the one under construction. How each element is put together three-dimensionally, it is so clever and fascinating. Oh, I can hardly wait to see the result…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

18 thoughts on “Henri Matisse: The Cut Outs @ Tate Modern

      • I liked it a lot, especially as I was quite enamoured with it as a young adult and I was quite excited about going. I haven’t gotten around to doing a post on it !

      • His energy and desire for creation right up until his death was awesome. Never too old or too late to be passionate for anything which makes us happy. It was very empowering experience for me. Can’t wait to read your post about it too! 😉 x

    • I can’t go with empty stomach if I am visiting exhibitions. First of all, I do not want to embarass myself with rumbling stomach in a very quiet gallery space. Also I want to concentrate on what is on the wall, not on what I will eat after the show! 😉
      Their new extension looks exciting, doesn’t it? I shall keep on reporting their progress in future. So watch this space!

    • Yes, indeed we did! I can hardly wait for Alexander McQueen’s Savage Beauty at V&A too. Even though I will have to wait for quite a while, I shall be there in the first week! xxx

    • Hi Julia, thank you for the comment and I am very sorry for not replying sooner. My Mac went on the strike and I was delayed 😦
      I must say Tate Modern is my most favourite art museum in London. Not only their shows but also their gift shops and restaurants are very much worth visiting for. 😉

  1. I really enjoyed a virtual mini tour of the exhibition from over here in Australia. I know that view from that café well. Also enjoyed the virtual macaroon and pot of Darjeeling. Always enjoy your posts.

    • Hi Charlotte, thank you for your comment & I am so sorry for not replying sooner. My Mac went on the strike and I was delayed. The Matisse show was very well thought out and I enjoyed it hugely. However, Paul & I agree that going around room to room and looking at arts is energy sapping. Without sustenance, such as cake & tea, we can never go on… 😉

      • No worries, what a nice word! Paul (aka Hubbie) is in Sydney now and enjoying your people’s hospitality. I can hardly wait to hear what he finds at Down Under… 😉

      • Hi again,

        How exciting that he is in Sydney. I am actually a Brit living in Melbourne, which is why I love your posts about places of interest and off-the-beaten track in London. And you take great pics. I need to improve my photographic skills!

      • Hi Charlotte! What are you talking about?! Your photos are beautiful! I love to see them more everytime. 🙂
        Paul is definitely in Sydney right now physically. However, his system still function only with the UK time-zone. He is definitely NOT a jet-setter… 😦

      • Hello again,

        Thank you for your kind comment about my photos!! You know, jet-lag is a real killer. There’s just no way round that long haul journey and time zone change but hope he enjoys Sydney anyway. I’m Ok when I come back to England but returning here is a shocker! How is London? Looking gorgeous and full of May blossoms?

      • Hi Charlotte, London is sunny & wet. The weather is so changeable, I am not sure if I should slap on sunscreen or take an umbrella!
        Paul had a great time in Sydney. He showed me an amazing image of the Sydney Opera House. I would love to visit the Down Under but the flight time sounds incredibly long… (^-^;)

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