Permanent public sculpture at Ijsselland Zuikenhuis, Rotterdam NL 2022

Glazed Earthenware in nine parts.

Permanent Commission Ijsselland Zuikenhuis, Rotterdam 2022

‘She is always a magnificent person. We talk of others, and things, in a certain tone- a little soft teasing. I would like to write ‘flowertation’. It’s somehow as if we were throwing flowers at each other- rose petals perhaps, and why not, nothing forbids this tenderness that passes in words, that overflows words.’

Henri Matisse on April 27th 1947 in a letter about Monique Bourgeois to friend Andŕe Rouveyre.

Monique by Jamie Kane, commissioned by Ijsselland Ziekenhuis, takes letters sent between the nurse Monique Bourgeois and artist Henri Matisse in the 1940’s as a point of departure. Kane takes apart Monique and Henri’s words to each other, leaving the gestures of their handwriting behind. Elements of text were collaged to- gether into new forms, so that we no longer know where Monique ends and Henri begins. These collages, were reproduced in ceramic, fusing together the elements of letters exchanged between patient and carer into one

The encounter Monique and Henri blossomed into a friendship spanning twelve years, right up until Henri Matisse passed away in 1954. His final work, the Dominican Chapel in Vence, would not have happened without the help and support of Monique; who chose to become a nun in 1944, changing her name to Sister Jacques-Marie.

The patient/carer relationship between Henri and Monique was deeply intimate and extended beyond what is typically expected of either side. Monique in many ways became an extension of Matisse’s body, whilst at the same time Henri men- tored her own ambitions of being an artist, as well as setting up a scholarship in order for Monique to continue her education. Their exchanges via handwritten letters chart a journey of belief, art, love and friendship.

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