"Fauvism was our ordeal by fire... colours became charges of dynamite. They were expected to charge light... The great merit of this method was to free the picture from all imitative and conventional contact." - Andre Derain


Fauvism, derived from impressionism, is a style of painting that emerged in France around the turn of the 20th century. Fauve artists would use brilliant colours, applied straight from the paint tubes. 

Examples of famous Fauve artists are Henri Matisse, André Derain and Maurice de Vlaminck. They all shared their interest in expressive function of colour and were considered the leaders of the new art movement. 


Fauvism, meaning ‘Wild Beasts’, was not a name given to the style by the artists who practised it but rather it derives from a remark given by art critic Louis Vauxcelles in a 1905 review of the Salon d'Automne exhibit (the first show to exhibit Fauve art). The review came about when a number of fauve pieces were exhibited in the same room as a Donatello sculpture. To express his disapproval of the style of art, Vauxcelles remarked: “A Donatello amongst the wild beasts."

The critic had gone on to describe fauvism as: 

“A movement I consider dangerous (despite the great sympathy I have for its perpetrators) is taking shape among a small clan of youngsters. A chapel has been established, two haughty priests officiating. MM Derain and Matisse; a few dozen innocent catechumens have received their baptism. Their dogma amounts to a wavering schematicism that proscribes modeling and volumes in the name of I-don't-know-what pictorial abstraction. This new religion hardly appeals to me. I don't believe in this Renaissance... M. Matisse, fauve-in-chief; M. Derain, fauve deputy; MM. Othon Friesz and Dufy, fauves in attendance... and M. Delaunay (a fourteen-year-old-pupil of M. Metzinger...), infantile fauvelet.” (Vauxcelles, Gil Blas, 20 March 1907).


Fauvism is a wonderful style of art for collectors who are looking for bold, brilliant colour. If you want to add a splash of colour to a rather dull room, a piece of fauvism art would be right up your alley. 

If you are interested in impressionism and you’re looking for a bold and exciting alternative to the classic style, Fauvism would be a great choice for you.

Check out ‘Dreamcatcher’ by Russian artist Costa Gorelov. This is a unique example of Fauvism. The subject matter is of a girl’s happiness, brought forward by her hopes and dreams, which are guarded by the Chimera, a Greek mythological creature. A true example of Fauvism, ‘Dreamcatcher’ is a colourful and vibrant piece of art with an edge.

No products were found matching your selection.