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The Royal End (Arii Matamoe), Fine Art
The Royal End (Arii Matamoe), Fine Art
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The Royal End (Arii Matamoe)

by Paul Gauguin

La Fin Royale (Arii Matamoe)

The Royal End (Arii Matamoe) from Fine Art, Prodi Art, funeral, Paul Gauguin, Gauguin
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Image preserved at 90 % Move image
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Description
Paul Gauguin's painting "Decapitated Head," created during his first stay in Polynesia in the 1890s, depicts a decapitated human head within a lavishly decorated interior, surrounded by mourning figures in the background. The Tahitian words "Arii" (noble) and "Matamoe" (sleeping eyes, signifying death) are added in the upper left of the canvas.

Gauguin was influenced by real events, such as the death of Tahitian King Pomare V and his witnessing of a public execution by guillotine.
However, the image does not correspond to the actual funeral of Pomare V, as his body was not decapitated. Gauguin had a tendency to blend reality and fantasy in his artistic work.

The vibrant and dark colors in the painting create a tropical and exotic atmosphere, reinforcing the notion of "primitivism" in Gauguin's art. In his illustrated book "Noa Noa," Gauguin linked this painting to the loss of indigenous culture due to European colonization.

While symbolist artists like Gauguin explored morbid themes such as decapitated heads, this work also reflects Gauguin's fascination with the duality between the East and West, as well as his sense of being a martyr of modern society, seeking refuge in a culture he perceived as "primitive."
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