fauvism (fō´vĬzəm) [Fr. fauve=wild beast], name derisively hurled at and cheerfully adopted by a group of French painters, including Matisse, Rouault, Derain, Vlaminck, Friesz, Marquet, van Dongen, Braque, and Dufy. Although fauvism was a short-lived movement (1905–8), its influence was international and basic to the evolution of 20th-century art. It was essentially an expressionist style, characterized by bold distortion of forms and exuberant color. Only Matisse continued to explore its possibilities after 1908. Most of the others contributed to the development of new styles, such as cubism, which immediately followed the fauvist movement.
See J. P. Crespelle, The Fauves (tr. 1962); J. É. Muller, Fauvism (1967); S. Whitfield, Fauvism (1990).