French Impressionist Painter, 1841-1919
Pierre-Auguste Renoir (February 25, 1841?CDecember 3, 1919) was a French artist who was a leading painter in the development of the Impressionist style. As a celebrator of beauty, and especially feminine sensuality, it has been said that "Renoir is the final representative of a tradition which runs directly from Rubens to Watteau".
Renoir's paintings are notable for their vibrant light and saturated color, most often focusing on people in intimate and candid compositions. The female nude was one of his primary subjects. In characteristic Impressionist style, Renoir suggested the details of a scene through freely brushed touches of color, so that his figures softly fuse with one another and their surroundings.
His initial paintings show the influence of the colorism of Eugene Delacroix and the luminosity of Camille Corot. He also admired the realism of Gustave Courbet and Edouard Manet, and his early work resembles theirs in his use of black as a color. As well, Renoir admired Edgar Degas' sense of movement. Another painter Renoir greatly admired was the 18th century master François Boucher.
A fine example of Renoir's early work, and evidence of the influence of Courbet's realism, is Diana, 1867. Ostensibly a mythological subject, the painting is a naturalistic studio work, the figure carefully observed, solidly modeled, and superimposed upon a contrived landscape. If the work is still a 'student' piece, already Renoir's heightened personal response to female sensuality is present. The model was Lise Tr??hot, then the artist's mistress and inspiration for a number of paintings.
In the late 1860s, through the practice of painting light and water en plein air (in the open air), he and his friend Claude Monet discovered that the color of shadows is not brown or black, but the reflected color of the objects surrounding them. Several pairs of paintings exist in which Renoir and Monet, working side-by-side, depicted the same scenes (La Grenouill??re, 1869).
One of the best known Impressionist works is Renoir's 1876 Dance at Le Moulin de la Galette (Le Bal au Moulin de la Galette). The painting depicts an open-air scene, crowded with people, at a popular dance garden on the Butte Montmartre, close to where he lived.
On the Terrace, oil on canvas, 1881, Art Institute of ChicagoThe works of his early maturity were typically Impressionist snapshots of real life, full of sparkling colour and light. By the mid 1880s, however, he had broken with the movement to apply a more disciplined, formal technique to portraits and figure paintings, particularly of women, such as The Bathers, which was created during 1884-87. It was a trip to Italy in 1881, when he saw works by Raphael and other Renaissance masters, that convinced him that he was on the wrong path, and for the next several years he painted in a more severe style, in an attempt to return to classicism. This is sometimes called his "Ingres period", as he concentrated on his drawing and emphasized the outlines of figures.
After 1890, however, he changed direction again, returning to the use of thinly brushed color which dissolved outlines as in his earlier work. From this period onward he concentrated especially on monumental nudes and domestic scenes, fine examples of which are Girls at the Piano, 1892, and Grandes Baigneuses, 1918-19. The latter painting is the most typical and successful of Renoir's late, abundantly fleshed nudes.
A prolific artist, he made several thousand paintings. The warm sensuality of Renoir's style made his paintings some of the most well-known and frequently-reproduced works in the history of art.. Related Paintings of Pierre Renoir :. | Child with Toys(Gabrielle and Jean) | Vicor Chocquet | Venezia-Piazza San Marco | Terrace in Cagnes | Female Nude in a Landscape |
Related Artists:John Greenhill
(c. 1644 -19 May 1676) was an English portrait painter, a pupil of Peter Lely, who approached his teacher in artistic excellence, but whose life was cut short by a dissolute lifestyle.
Greenhill was born at Salisbury, Somerset (now Wiltshire) around 1644, the eldest son of John Greenhill, registrar of the diocese of Salisbury, and Penelope Champneys, daughter of Richard Champneys of Orchardleigh, Somerset. His grandfather was Henry Greenhill of Steeple Ashton in Wiltshire. His father was connected through his brothers with the East India trade.
Greenhill's first attempt was a portrait of his paternal uncle, James Abbott of Salisbury, whom he is said to have sketched surreptitiously, as the old man would not sit for him. About 1662 he moved to London, and became a pupil of Sir Peter Lely. His progress was rapid, and he acquired some of Lely's skill and method. He carefully studied Vandyck's portraits, and George Vertue commented that he copied so closely Vandyck's portrait of "Thomas Killigrew and his dog" that it was difficult to know which was the original. Vertue also says that his progress excited Lely's jealousy.
Greenhill was at first industrious, and married early. But a taste for poetry and drama, and living in Covent Garden in the vicinity of the theatres, led him to associate with many members of the free-living theatrical world, and he fell into "irregular habits". On 19 May 1676, while returning from the "Vine Tavern" (in Holborn) in a state of intoxication, he fell into the gutter in Long Acre, and was carried to his lodgings in Lincoln's Inn Fields, where he died the same night. He was buried in St Giles in the Fields church. He left a widow and family, to whom Lely gave an annuity.John Downman
English Painter, ca.1750-1824, English painter and draughtsman. He became a pupil of Benjamin West in 1768 and entered the Royal Academy Schools, London, the following year. In 1770 and 1772 he exhibited portraits at the Royal Academy and showed his first subject picture in 1773. He left for a period of study in Italy and was in Rome with Joseph Wright of Derby from 1773 to 1774. When he next exhibited at the Royal Academy (1777) he was living in Cambridge, but from 1778 to 1804 his considerable annual contribution to the Academy exhibitions was sent from various London addresses. His very popular small portraits were often shown in groups of six or nine. His occasional subject pictures were based on themes from mythology, Classical history, poetry and the theatre. They included a scene from As You Like It (untraced) painted for John Boydell's Shakespeare Gallery. Downman became ARA in 1795 and travelled widely in later life, marrying in Exeter in 1806 and sending works to the Royal Academy (1805-12 and 1816-19) from all over the country. Walter Langley,RI