The colors of the Beasts
Proudly self-taught, Maurice de Vlaminck, born in Paris, the son of musicians, was supposed to become a violinist. At the age of 24 he visited an exhibition and saw some paintings by Van Gogh: he wanted to become a painter and use colors like him.
Critics invented the nickname "beasts" (fauve) to bring together painters with characteristics similar to De Vlaminck. Use of pure colors without correspondence with reality, abolition of perspective, use of a marked contour line. For the "fauves" (Matisse, Derain, Dufy and others) nature is only a pretext from which to take lines and spaces and recompose them to give colors the possibility of expressing themselves directly.
Here the tree trunks turn red, the sky orange and the leaves blue. The color, sometimes, spread directly from the tube without even using the brush.
Van Gogh had freed painting from the obligation of fidelity to reality, even overcoming the impressionist experience. And the "fauves", which never became a real movement due to the lack of a program and organic cohesion among the painters, were however the link to expressionism.
They affirmed and wanted a free, immediate art, without social, philosophical or literary implications, almost the opposite of contemporary Cubism.
“I didn't ask for anything. Life has given me everything. I did what I could, I painted what I saw »Maurice De Vlaminck.