Fauvism is the style of les Fauves - French for 'the wild beasts' - who were a small group of artists, led by Andre Derain and Henri Matisse. The movement rejected Impressionism's realist qualities as they sought to establish a painting style which was more visually arresting - an effect achieved through the use of bold, bright colours. The movement was heavily influenced by Post-Impressionism, with the work of Van Gogh, Seurat and Cezanne all absorbed into the movement. The Fauves first exhibited together in Paris in 1905, and were initially subjected to derision. However they slowly gained respect as major art buyers began to take an interest, with Matisse establishing himself as one of the most important figures in 20th century art. Now this short lived artistic movement is rightly viewed as among the most exciting developments in modern art.
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