Henri Émile Benoît Matisse ( French: [ɑ̃ʁi emil bənwɑ matis] ; 31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for both his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship. He was a draughtsman , printmaker , and sculptor , but is known primarily as a painter. 
In 1896 and 1897, Matisse visited the Australian painter John Peter Russell on the island Belle Île off the coast of Brittany. Russell introduced him to Impressionism and to the work of van Gogh , who had been a friend of Russell but was completely unknown at the time. Matisse's style changed completely. He later said "Russell was my teacher, and Russell explained colour theory to me."  In 1896 Matisse exhibited five paintings in the salon of the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts , two of which were purchased by the state. 
With the model Caroline Joblau, he had a daughter, Marguerite, born in 1894. In 1898 he married Amélie Noellie Parayre; the two raised Marguerite together and had two sons, Jean (born 1899) and Pierre (born 1900). Marguerite and Amélie often served as models for Matisse. 
Many of Matisse's paintings from 1898 to 1901 make use of a Divisionist technique he adopted after reading Paul Signac 's essay, "D'Eugène Delacroix au Néo-impressionisme".  His paintings of 1902–03, a period of material hardship for the artist, are comparatively somber and reveal a preoccupation with form. Having made his first attempt at sculpture, a copy after Antoine-Louis Barye , in 1899, he devoted much of his energy to working in clay, completing The Slave in 1903. 
Gustave Moreau 's Studio , 1894-1895
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