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Renoir decided to study painting seriously and where he felt a much greater affinity with three students who entered the studio a few months later: Alfred Sisley, Claude Monet, and Frederic Bazille. He met them in the studio of Charles Gleyre and four of them dreamed of an art that was closer to life and free from past tradition. They have the same goals and these four young men shared the same ideals together that led quickly to their strong friendship bonds. The 1860s were difficult year for Renoir. He started exhibiting his painting at the Paris salon in 1864 and recognition did not come due to the Franco-Prussian War. At times, he was too poor to buy paint or canvas and the Salons in 1866 and 1877 rejected his works. He has been going through the hard times but however the following year; Salons accepted his painting Lise, a portrait of his girlfriend, Lise Trehot. One of the Renoir’s early works includes Portrait of the painter Bazille (1867), The Painter Sisley and His Wife (1868) and Monet Painting in His Garden (1873). He continued to study more paintings of other artists, not only Courbet and Manet, but Camille (1796-1875) and Eugene Delacroix (1798-1863) as well.
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A revolution was beginning in French painting. Renoir, a young artist together with his close friends started to rebel against the traditional of western paint and went to attempt new freedom, inspiration and exploration in his style. As a result his works revealed a look of freshness and warmth compared to the traditional arts. The new art showed sparking bright light and colors instead of dark colors like the brown and black of past paintings. These qualities signaled the beginning of impressionist art. In 1869, Renoir and his friend Monet worked together at La Grenouillere, a bathing spot on the river Seine. Both of the artists were interested in painting light and water, the key to impressionism was there when Renoir and Monet made a discovery that shadows are not brown or black but are colored by their surroundings. In 1874, Renoir participated in the first impressionist exhibition; his works included the Opera Box .He tired a new way of style to the tradition of figure painting, his work has a perfect illustration in thoughts and technique. He uses small and multicolored stokes to evoke the vibration of the atmosphere especially a young woman’s skin in the outdoors. Renoir’s popularity was increased during the 1870s and he was backed by several art collector and dealers. Several of his masterpieces during this period of time: La Loge (1874; “The Theatre Box”), Le Moulin de la galette (1876) and Mme Charpentier and Her Children (1878).He produced paintings like Swing and the Moulin de la Galette (both 1876). These painting showed men and women being together, openly and enjoying a warm sunlight. Figures blend softly into one another and into their surrounding space. These paintings are pleasurable and full of human feeling. Renoir managed to master the ability to convey his visual impression and his painting has shown the pleasures of life despite his financial problems that worries him.
In the 1881 and 1882, Renoir began to separate himself from the impressionist, because he was unhappy about the new style he was taking. In paintings like the Luncheon of the Boating Party (1880-81), he felt that his style was becoming too loose and becoming less distinct. He looked to the past for a fresh inspiration and he made several trips to Algeria, Italy, and Provence. He was greatly impressed by the art of Raphael (1483-1520). He became convinced that use of the Impressionistic technique was no longer enough for him and small brushstrokes of contrasting colors placed side by side did not allow him to bring out the effects of the skin. During his journey to Italy, he discovered Raphael and the hallmarks of classicism: the beauty of drawing, the clear line to define a form, and the expressive force of smooth painting of a modeling body. Renoir was tempted to separate with impressionism, which he begun to doubt and feeling that he had been mistaken pursuing the ephemeral in art. Most of Renoir’s paintings done in 1883 to 1884 were dry and he began to draw in a tight, classical manner, carefully outlining his figures in an effort to give them increased clarity. It became softer and the outlines more sketchy, he used very strong colors – often reds and oranges – and thick brush strokes. His favorite subjects were young, buxom, nude girls. These paintings such as The Umbrellas (1883) and the Grandes baigneuses (1884-87) focus on only the volume, form, contours, and line rather than color and brushstroke. These paintings were considered the least successful of Renoir’s mature expressions.
By the end of the 1880s, Renoir had passed through his dry period. His late work is truly remarkable: a glorious outpouring of nude figures, beautiful young girls, and lush landscapes. These paintings include the Music Lesson (1891), Young Girl Reading (1892), and Sleeping Bather (1897). They had expands on the achievements of his great work in the 1870s.Renoir had a strong reaction against Impressionism until about 1890. During these years he made several trips to southern France, scenery of Southern France offered him scenes with color and sensuality. At the same time, the joyous of nature gave him the desire to depart from his newfound adherence to the dictates of classicism. He recovered the freshness of his art and painted women at their bath with the same healthy bloom like a bouquet of flowers. His financial was improving stable and he was married in 1890 to Aline Charigot. In 1880 Renoir met a woman named Aline Charigot, a young dress maker’s assistant, who works not far from his workshop. Alice was twenty years old at that time and they were married after that. Aline was devoted her life to Renoir, taking care for the household duties and showing hospitality to the visitors and she was also an excellent cook. These characteristic made Alice greatly loved by Renoir. Three sons were born and they named Pierre, Jean, and Claude. Renoir painted his wife in the work “The Boating Party,” which took several months for him to paint, his wife Aline is the main subject of the painting on the left. During that period of Renoir’s marriage life, his future was assured, and during that period of time his works reflected his confidence in the future.
In his late years, Renoir had his first attack of rheumatism in 1894, and, as the attacks became more frequent, he decided to spend more time in southern France, because of the climate was better for his health. In 1910, he was no longer able to walk, but Renoir never gives up painting; when his fingers were no longer having the strength to grab the paintbrush. He continued by binding his paintbrush to his hand. Despite his misfortune, Renoir’s paintings still have a cheerful attitude towards life. His paintings become more personal and focusing on portrait of his wife, his children, and Gabrielle, his maid, who often also posed for his nude paintings. Some of the paintings were the The Artist’s Family (1896) and Sleeping Bather (1897). Renoir also had a young assistant named Richard Guino, who was willingly, follow his direction and succeed so well that the works have all the qualities of Renoir’s style. Renoir created sculptures by cooperating with his assistant. In 1915, Renoir’s wife died after returning from Gerardmer where she gone to see their son, jean who was seriously wounded in war. Several months before Renoir death, he was lucky to able to go to Paris to see his Portrait of Mme Georges Charpentier (1876-77), he was able to visit the Louvre to witness his work hung beside the great painters of old that he visited so often as a child. During that period of time, many of his friends wheeled him for the last time through the Louvre to view the masterpieces that he had venerated throughout his life. In the 1919, it is coming to the end of Renoir life; as his health got worst, he died in the village of Cagnes-sur-Mer, Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur, on December 3 (1919).
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Renoir’s paintings are famous and notable for their vibrant light and saturated color, mainly focusing on people and candid composition. One of his primary subjects is the female nude. In the impressionist style, he suggested that details of a scene should freely brushed touches of color, so that his figures softly blend in well with the surrounding. As an impressionism artist, he paints several thousand of paintings and his style has a warmth sensuality that made his painting well known and being reproduced works in the history of art.
In the conclusion, I was admired by Pierre-Auguste Renoir because of his determination that he never gives up painting; when his fingers were no longer having the strength to grab the paintbrush. He continued by binding his paintbrush to his hand and continued to paint until the end of his life, the spirit and determination was there. I love his painting style that is full of sparking lights and colors, the richness of feeling and warmth of response to the world and people. What I have learned in impressionism is in order to capture the moment, capture the feeling of the moment, so artist had to use big brush strokes. And shadows in reality were not black or brown or gray, is actually shadows reflect the colors, the real colors of the reflected objects. Therefore every impressionist work of art is very colorful because they make a point out of not using a traditional black and white technique for shadowing, but using colors for shadowing.
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