At the time people thought I had deliberately chosen a bad example of Matisse's work out of malice. This is quite untrue. I thought it was a key picture then and still do. Critics are always talking about this and that influence on Matisse's work. Well, the influence on Matisse when he painted this work was his children, who had just started to draw. Their naive drawings fascinated him and completely changed his style. Nobody realizes this, and yet it's one of the keys to Matisse.Pablo Picasso
One of the books I'm reading now is Jonathan Fineberg's the Innocent Eye: Children's Art and the Modern Artist. It's got some great pictures and some illuminating new detail on how artists have learned from children, their own and others. Matisse, as mentioned above, was one. Fauvism, of which he was the grandaddy, had a lot to do with going color happy in a childlike way. And in the early 20th century Kandinsky and his then-girlfriend Gabriele Munter had a gallery where they actually exhibited children's paintings and drawings, alongside their own and their friends'. (This was before most people had refridgerators, as such.