"Nothing really belongs to us, neither our emotions nor our sensations nor any of the gifts which are furnished us by nature. Why pride ourselves on our so-called originality?" - Andre Derain, 1943.
The phrase "painter's painter" comes to mind when considering the career of Andre Derain, for Derain's skills and mastery of multiple styles were celebrated by his contemporaries early in his career. A pivotal force behind the development of Fauvism and Cubism, he formed early friendships with Vlaminck, Matisse, Picasso, and Braque, creating groundbreaking, powerfully original works. In later decades, however, his quick ascent through the radical movements of the French painting world was sometimes characterized as lesser in influence than his more famous compatriots.
In 1960, American painter Leland Bell wrote "The Case for Derain as an Immortal ." Published six years after Derain's death, this article still stands as the most forceful argument for his place as an early 20th century master.