"'Arbre de Neige' was created in 1947 as one of a series of small scale works in richly colored paper with which the artist covered the walls of his studio at the Villa Le Rêve at Vence, in the south of France. Matisse had first used the technique to stunning effect in designing his pivotal print series Jazz, conceived during the war and published in 1947. Each element was cut with masterful certainty into heavy paper, a technique Matisse described as "drawing with scissors". The cutouts were then pinned against sheets of complementary colors and arranged on the wall at the artist's direction. The loosely affixed elements and their delicate organic shapes reacted to the shifting light and gentle breezes to create an exotic indoor garden."