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 :. | Portrait of the Artist's Mother | The Castle ar Dolceaqua | Madame Monet Reclining on a Sofa Reading Le Figaro | Young Girls in a Garden in Montmartre | Young Girl with Daisies |
Related Artists:Konstantin Alekseevich Korovin
painted Moon Night, Paris in 1861-1939Kapiton Zelentsov
Kapiton Zelentsov (Russian 1790-1845) was a Russian painter notable for his illustrations for books by Aleksandr Pushkin, Faddei Bulgarin and Mikhail Zagoskin. He was the student of Alexey Venetsianov.
Louis-Francois, Baron Lejeune
(3 February 1775, Strasbourg - 29 February 1848) was a French general, painter, and lithographer. His memoirs have frequently been republished and his name is engraved on the Arc de Triomphe.
He studied painting in the studio of Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes, alongside Jean-Victor Bertin, but left the studio to volunteer in the Compagnie des arts de Paris in 1792. He received his baptism of fire in the battle of Valmy later that year. He became a sergeant in the 1st Arsenal battalion and in 1793 moved to the artillery at La Fere, assisting in the sieges of Landrecies, Le Quesnoy and Valenciennes. At Valenciennes he became aide-de-camp to general Jacob then, as a lieutenant on attachment to the engineers, took part in the 1794 Holland campaign and the 1795 campaign.
Called to the depot in 1798, he succeeded brilliantly in his exams and was made a captain on attachment to the engineers. He became aide-de-camp to marshal Berthier in 1800, a post he retained until 1812 and in which he took an active part in practically all of the Napoleonic campaigns. He was wounded and captured in Spain. He was promoted to full captain after Marengo and chef de bataillon after Austerlitz, also become a knight of the Legion d'honneur and a colonel at the Siege of Saragossa.
The German campaign of 1806 brought him to Munich, where he visited the workshop of Alois Senefelder, the inventor of lithography. Lejeune was fascinated by the possibilities of the new method and whilst there he made the drawing on stone of his famous Cossack (printed by C. and ~f. Senefelder, 1806). Whilst he was taking his dinner, and with his horses harnessed and waiting to take him back to Paris, one hundred proofs were printed, one of which he subsequently submitted to Napoleon. The introduction of lithography into France was greatly due to the efforts of Lejeune.
In 1812, during the French invasion of Russia, he was made general de brigade and chief of staff to Davout. Frostbitten on the face, Lejeune left his post during the retreat from Russia and was arrested on the orders of Napoleon. Freed in March 1813, Lejeune was then sent to the Illyrian provinces, before rejoining the army under the orders of marshal Oudinot, becoming his chief of staff. During the Saxony campaign, Lejeune was present at the Battle of Lutzen (1813), the crossing of the River Spree and at Bautzen. He was made an officer of the Legion d'honneur and a commander of the Order of Maximilian of Bavaria. At the battle of Hoyersverda, when Below's corps wiped out the 12th corps formed up in square on the plain, Lejeune (at risk of being kidnapped) ventured into the enemy lines with one battalion, general Wolf's cavalry and six 12 pounder guns. He thus broke the whole of the Prussian artillery and saved marshal Oudinot and his army. Wounded several times and lastly at Hanau, he was authorised to leave the army in November 1813 after more than 20 years' service. After his departure from the army, he devoted himself to painting.