MATISSE – Drawing with Scissors, a Hayward Gallery Touring exhibition from London’s Southbank Centre, opens tomorrow in Durham.

It features 35 posthumous prints of cut-outs which the artist produced in the last four years of his life.

They will be on show in the new Gala Theatre gallery until Sunday, 18 March.

Matisse’s paper cut-outs were his final triumph and include iconic images such as The Snail and the Blue Nudes. The colours he used were so strong his doctor advised him to wear dark glasses when working on them.

Though not released until after his death in 1954, the publication was planned during his lifetime, with the first lithographic plates prepared under his direction a few days before he died.

The exhibition coincides with Gala’s production of Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads, and three drama, visual arts and animation engagement projects will take place across the county, co-ordinated by the theatre’s community arts team.

The gallery will showcase modern and contemporary art by local, regional, national and international artists. Opening times are 10am-8.30pm, Monday to Saturday, and 2.30-8.30pm on Sundays. Admission is free.