Can someone help me reword this and tell me if it was difficult please? Summarize 4. Matisse is the best painter ever at putting the viewer at the scene. He's the most realistic of all modern...

Can someone help me reword this and tell me if it was difficult please?

Summarize 4. Matisse is the best painter ever at putting the viewer at the scene. He's the most realistic of all modern artists, if you admit the feel of the breeze as necessary to a landscape and the smell of oranges as essential to a still life. "The Casbah Gate" depicts the well-known gateway Bab el Aassa, which pierces the southern wall of the city near the sultan's palace. With scrubby coats of ivory, aqua, blue, and rose delicately fenced by the liveliest gray outline in art history, Matisse gets the essence of a Tangier afternoon, including the subtle presence of the bowaab, the sentry who sits and surveys those who pass through the gate. From Peter Plagens, "Bright Lights." Newsweek (26 March 1990): 50.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Let us look at how we might paraphrase this:

Matisse is better than any other painter at making you feel that you are actually at the scene of his paintings.  No other modern artist paints in such a realistic way.  At least, this is true if you think that a landscape painting should make you feel the breeze that is blowing over the landscape and if you think that a still life should allow you to smell the oranges the painter is painting.  His painting “The Casbah Gate” shows the famous gateway Bab el Aassa, which allows people through the southern wall of the city near the palace where the sultan lives.  In this picture, Matisse completely captures what it is like to be in Tangiers in the afternoon.  He does this by painting roughly in ivory, aqua, blue, and rose and then by carefully surrounding those colors with a grey outline that is livelier than any other painter has ever made it.  In addition, he paints the bowaab, who is the guard who checks on all the people who pass through the gate, but he does not make that person be very obvious or obtrusive.

For me, this is difficult because the writer uses artistic terminology that is not easy to understand.  I am not, for example, really sure what makes a grey outline “lively.”  Also, I think that the writer is trying to actually evoke the feeling in the painting by the words he has chosen.  It is hard to capture this while paraphrasing.

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