During April 1906, at a party at Gertrude Stein's house, Henri Matisse was introduced to Picasso, who was 12 years younger.
Picasso and Matisse held entirely different view both on the aesthetic ideas of art and in lifestyle. Comparing with Picasso, a conceited Spanish who looks stocky, Matisse appeared to be little taller and more elegant. They were both the representative of avant-gardes of Paris's art circles at that time. It is said that they always kept an eye on each other's height. Not until years went by did they seem to stop comparing their height, but no their controversy about art.
Early in 1921, while most art aficionados started to be interested in Picasso, Matisse had already become American favorite painter. During this time, Picasso, who had been becoming more and more popular, once talked about this 12 years elder colleague Matisse humorously, "we two just like the two poles of the earth. I am the south pole, while he is the North Pole."
"There is no one who looks at Matisse's paintings more carefully than me, vise verse", Picasso said later. The main distinction on the concept of painting between them is that, the subjects and colors of Matisse's paintings come from nature while Picasso tends to imaginary. Although the subjects of their paintings were women and inanimate objects, Matisse wanted to learn fully about the essence of subjects and then design his paintings. Good man Gertrude Stein once said that he felt the friendship of Matisse and Picasso was not so harmonious. Matisse understated, "we are always friendly". However, it seemed not to be the truth. It was rumored that Picasso and his friends had played a dart game on Margaret portraits 1906 (Portrait of His Daughter Margaret) which was painted by Matisse ( Picasso received an order about Bottle, Bowel and Lemon 1907 at that year). Whatever other people thought, the relationship of these two artists was the very word of Closely Friends, though they still had their own supporters in their art field.
Actually, they concerned each other for lifelong since they knew each other. For example, when Matisse was only able to sit on wheelchair at his later years, he almost did not contact with the outside world except Picasso who was thought to be one of his most welcomed friends visiting him frequently. However, they still argued their ideas of art with each other heatedly like two duelist competing swordplay.