‘All my life I have worked in this way in front of these same objects; they give me the power of their reality by engaging my mind with all that they have experienced for me and with me.’

— Henri Matisse in Marie-France Boyer, Matisse at Villa Le Rêve, London: Thames & Hudson, 2004

For further reading, the book Matisse at Villa Le Rêve by Marie-France Boyer affords a delightful glimpse into the magical interiors Matisse created for himself, with intimate photos taken by Hélène Adant, who was a cousin of Matisse’s model and assistant Lydia Delectorskaya. Here we can find the artist at work surrounded by his beloved doves, cats, artworks, textiles, porcelain objects, and carefully chosen knick-knacks.

Henri Matisse in his studio at Villa Le Rêve, photographed by Hélène Adant, Vence, 1946