Fauvism is a relatively short-lived movement in French painting (from about 1898 to about 1908) that revolutionized the concept of color in modern art.
The fauves rejected the impressionist palette of soft, shimmering tones in favor of the violent colors used by the postimpressionists Paul Gauguin and Vincent van Gogh for expressive emphasis. They achieved a poetic energy through vigorous line, simplified yet dramatic surface pattern, and intense color.
Les fauves, literally "the wild beasts," was originally a pejorative label applied to the group at their first exhibition in 1905, although the fauvist style had been employed by the group's members for several years before that date. The artists included André Derain, Maurice de Vlaminck, Raoul Dufy, Georges Braque, Henri Manguin, Albert Marquet, Jean Puy, Emile Othon Friesz, and Henri Matisse, their undisputed leader. The epithet was never accepted by the painters themselves and, indeed, in no way does it describe their sunny or lyrically subjective imagery.