It is a sub-category of Post-Impressionism. The name Fauvism derives from the French term ‘Les Fauves’ what translates as ‘the wild beast’. It was the name of a French group of artists which members emphasized painterly qualities and strong colors over the representational or realistic values retrained by the Impressionists. The leaders of the group were Henri Matisse and Andre Derain. It only existed between 1904 and 1909.
The work of the Fauvist is characterized by wild brush work, strident colors and a high degree of simplification and abstraction. Fauvism is an extreme development of van Gogh’s Post-Impressionism fused with Seurat’s, Signat’s and other Neo-Impressionists Pointillism and influenced by Gauguin and Cezanne. They appreciated pre-Renaissance French art and African sculpture.
Critics said about the art at the first exhibition: A pot of paint has been flung in the face of the public. One could say it was not highly appreciated at its time.