During the 19th century, Paris went through a series of change as the medieval city developed into a modern metropolis. Innovations throughout this period as well as a change of attitude towards social classes and Academic art became the catalysts that birthed the artistic movement, Impressionism. Paintings such as Le Pont de l’Europe by Gustave Caillebotte, Interior View of the Gare, St-Lazare: The Auteuil Line by Claude Monet and Boulevard Montmartre, matin d’hiver by Camille Pissarro encapsulated the artistic and social contexts of Impressionism.
Claude Monet and Camile Pissarro were two of the founders of Impressionism, a movement that was largely influenced by its predecessor, Realism. Originally, Monet’s career in art started with him drawing caricatures of the townspeople of Le Havre. Then in 1857, he met en plein-air painter, Eugène Boudin. He urged a reluctant eighteen year old Monet to paint outdoors, encouraging him to “see the light.” Boudin’s teachings would later influence Monet as he met artists such as Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Alfred Sisley in 1862. Together they refined plein–air painting; they investigated the effects of light as they painted with broken colours and rapid brushstrokes across a canvas. In contrast was Pissarro as his earliest works were rendered in the more traditional Academic style-invisible brushstrokes, and realistic subject matter. Though in 1859, his works became looser and freer, greatly influenced by Camille Corot’s rural scenes and Gustave Courbet’s plein-air paintings.
Gustave Caillebotte, however, was an Impressionist that did not rely on painting en plein-air. He turned towards the innovation that was photography, invented during the mid 1930’s, to guide him i...
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...rd Montmartre, matin d’hiver. Paris as a modern metropolis was evident in the wide street and bustling sidewalks in Pissarro’s work, as well as the grand townhouses and cafés lining the street.
Paris became the centre of the newly prosperous bourgeoisie and the Impressionists captured it all across their canvases. Evidence of this could be seen in Caillebotte’s Le Pont de l’Europe as it depicted a bourgeois couple strolling in Paris. The urbanization of Paris also brought about a freedom of mobility for the Parisians as they could utilize the new railroads to travel in and out of the city for their leisure. In Monet’s Interior View of the Gare, St-Lazare: The Auteuil Line, the coming and going of trains displayed the importance of this invention to the city’s roaming inhabitants. Many Parisians took advantage of this innovation, such as art dealer Paul Durand-Ruel.
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Paris in 1850 was in an precarious condition. In the Prologue, Harvey compares the state of Paris to a double straitjacket, each of which fortified the other. The first straitjacket refers to the economic crisis that occurred during the late 1840’s. During this time, there appeared to be an upsurge of rural workers coming into Paris from the countryside searching for employment or assistance. With this sudden increase in the population of Paris came a high rate of unemployment and an overaccumulation of capital wealth. This surplus of labour, however, was problematic, since employment was scarce in comparison to the population. Predictably, this situation instigated thoughts of reformations in the capitalist system in place. This economic catastrophe, Harvey argues, is one of the reasons that urged Louis-Napoleon and Haussmann to
Edgar Degas had said, “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see,” this sentiment is critical to understanding Impressionism as an art movement and later as a literary one. Literary Impressionist authors adopted the techniques of the artists. Both artist and author use a layering to construct impressions of their subjects. Berthe Morisot’s painting, Woman at Her Toilette, in which the painting of her subject appears to be wearing jewelry, but closer examination of the work, reveals that she used the layering of the paint to give the painting texture which creates this impression. Like Morisot, Muriel Sparks also uses the layering of her words to create an impression of her subject, Miss Jean Brodie, in her novella, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie. This layering contributes depth and complexity that is prevalent in the impressionistic style of art and literature. Jesse Metz, in the introduction of his book, Literary Impressionism and Modernist Aesthetics, speculates that if literature is considered an impression then it “makes surfaces show depths, make[s] fragments suggest wholes,” which also can be seen within the art style (1). Whereas the artist uses paint and brush to create an impressionistic painting, author Muriel Sparks uses the layering character perception to create the subject of her text.
Impressionism is the name given to the art movement that changed art forever. Starting in France in the 1860's, Impressionism was considered a radical break from tradition.1 Through the work of artists including Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Pierre Renoir, Camille Pissarro and Edgar Degas impressionism was born. Impressionists painted outside and focused greatly on light and its reflection. They painted quickly on primed white canvas with short visible brushstrokes and placed separate colours side by side letting the viewer’s eyes mix them. (Techniques uncommon to art at this time) Regarding their subject they again broke with tradition and painted anything they wanted including the modernity of Paris and the everyday life of its citizens. This new found freedom regarding subject along with unconventional techniques greatly displeased the L’École des Beaux-Arts where academic artists would have worked on subjects such as history, royalty and mythology.2 In contrast to the impressionists their work had a smooth varnished finish, showing little to no evidence of the artist’s presence. Having introduced Impressionism, I aim to in this essay analyse why the city of Paris is at the heart of the impressionist movement. Firstly by looking at how Paris helped create the impressionist movement and secondly how Paris fuelled it.
The visual appeal of the renovated city, along with other factors such as the high quality of the art schools, caused Impressionism to take off in Paris around this time (Thomson 2000: 19-20). Impressionist painters wanted to capture the present, not historical or idealistic scenes. For this reason, they painted boulevards, parks, train stations, and other places that were important to modern Paris life. Human figures were important subjects in their paintings, since one of the most effective ways to depict modern life is to show the people living in it.
Impressionist painting was the beginning of a cultural shift away from religious and mythic themes, to subjects and styles that are less static such as everyday life of the general people, and the fleeting moments around them. As history progresses, so does art and the movements they create. The impressionism movement started in an already war-ravaged France where the evolution of ideals and way of life were as impermanent as the subject of the paintings of the time.
During Vincent Van Gogh’s childhood years, and even before he was born, impressionism was the most common form of art. Impressionism was a very limiting type of art, with certain colors and scenes one must paint with. A few artists had grown tired of impressionism, however, and wanted to create their own genre of art. These artists, including Paul Gaugin, Vincent Van Gogh, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and Paul Cezanne, hoped to better express themselves by painting ...
The Gare Saint-Lazare by Claude Monet is one of 12 paintings completed by the artist of the same location, a commuter train station called The Gare Saint-Lazare in Paris. During this time, he moved himself from Argenteuil to a small apartment near the station while he was working on these paintings. Monet lived from 1840 to 1926 and is considered to be the father of impressionism, the term deriving from his painting entitled Impression, Sunrise. Monet often painted the same location many times in an attempt to capture the differences of changing light and seasonal variances. He was also very fond of painting outside of studios, and urged his contemporaries to do the same.
Impressionism is very pretty and complicated. It was from 1860 to 1910. Monet is the perfect Impressionist. Impressionism had its basic tenants. Their subject matter was the middle upper class, the city, and leisurely activities. They painted on en plein air which means they painted outdoors. They painted in snow, rain, storm, just in order to record directly the effects of light and atmosphere. They painted with strokes and touches of pure color by using a great deal of white and rarely black. They recorded the shifting play of light on the surface of objects and the effect light has on the eye without concern for the physicality of the object being painted. They were influenced by Japanese art and photography. One of Monet’s works is titled Water Lilies. The medium of this work is oil on canvas. Monet is an impressionist. He puts up pure color just describe the water. He said, when you go out paint, the impression of the scene not the exact scene.
Paris was overcrowded. The streets were too small and dirty as well. So Napoleon III hired Eugene Houssman to fix this. Napoleon wanted him to modernize Paris. Eugene completely tore down the center of Paris and cleaned up the sludge. Eugene laid down wide boulevards in a wheel shape to help with crowd control and made all of the buildings the same height at 5 stories
The modernization of Paris during this period allowed much social reconstruction of physical spaces, nonetheless allowing much movement of individuals to different parts of the city. Artists, poets, and writers were all individuals hat situated themselves in areas like that of the Montmartre, because of the importance of the entertainment that was available to the lower class as well as interaction with other social classes without prejudice. In the late nineteenth-century, the Montmartre itself was situated on the outer limits of Paris, thus already and clearly labeling it as the home of the marginal lower-class individuals including artists, anarchists, and Bohemians.
Claude Monet is often considered one of greatest most dedicated of the Impressionist painters. His aim was to catch the light and atmosphere, something that was scarcely done before. He enjoyed painting outdoors and developed a free and spontaneous painting technique. His brushwork is remarkably flexible and varied. He often changed his technique, sometimes broad and sweeping other times dappled and sparkling.
Rejected by all of Parisian society in 1872, Oscar-Claude Monet 's Soleil Levant, or Impression Sunrise, was the unfortunate center of mockery and ridicule. Today, the painting 's market value surpasses $30 million , but the value of its cultural impact on the world is worth far more. Impression, Sunrise, fathered a revolutionary new style of painting called Impressionism, after its name, and brought vast change into the world of art. Recognized for its modernity, Monet 's painting rejected all established techniques, and its incorporation of new technology and ideas opened the floodgates for years of experimentation to come. It was out with the old and in with the new. This particular work of art is a cultural treasure in that it brought a
The impressionism movement occurred in both art and poetry. During this time people branched out from the original styles and ways. They strived to find different ways to presents their ideas. Art and poetry were the two most popular subjects of interest. Claude Monet’s Woman with a Parasol: Madame Monet and her son, and William Butler Yeats’s “The Wild Swan at Coole” both captured aspects that were seen important during the Impressionism Age.