Wanda de Guébriant has confirmed the authenticity of this work.
The colombe cutout in the present work relates to the mural composition that Matisse created in 1946 on the walls of his atelier in Montparnasse, Océanie, Le ciel and Océanie, La mer. Inspired by his trips to Tahiti and the South Pacific, Matisse affixed paper cut-outs of birds and marine-life motifs directly on the walls with pins in what would be considered his first monumental papier découpés composition. The presence of pin-holes on this cutout suggests it was pinned to a wall at some point before Matisse sent it to his friend, the satirical draughtsman and writer, André Rouveyre. Rouveyre and Matisse exchanged some twelve hundred letters between 1941 and 1954, which provide unprecedented insight into Matisse's creative process and artistic aims at this time. Rouveyre and Matisse also collaborated throughout the 1940s on a book about the late poet Guillaume Apollinaire. Following Matisse’s instructions to “put this next to the dove,” Rouveyre mounted the cutout alongside his friend’s note, creating the present tableau.