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Pam Hill

on 13 November 2014

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Transcript of Impressionism

Edgar Degas
Pam Hill
Fall 2014

Claude Monet
Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Edouard Manet
What is Impressionism?
Degas is famous for painting pictures of ballet dancers. Unlike many of the other Impressionist artists, he would sketch his subjects live and then paint them later in his studio (
When do you think this scene takes place before, during, or after the lesson?

Tell how you think the girl in orange is feeling. Explain why you feel this way.

Edgar Degas,
The Dance Lesson
, 1879, oil on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington,
Degas sketched as he wandered the Opera House, filling his notebooks with drawings of dancers and then returning to his studio to compose and paint (
The subject that dominates more than half of his ballet paintings are back room scenes like
The Dance Lesson
: dancers resting in the studio, propped awkwardly on a chair or the floor, heads down, exhausted after practicing to the ceaseless demands of the ballet master (
Edgar Degas,
The Dance Foyer at the Opera on the rue Le Peletier
, 1872, oil on canvas, Musée D'Orsay, Paris, France
Edgar Degas,
Dancer Adjusting Her Slipper
, 1873, Graphite heightened with white chalk on faded pink paper;
Why do you think Degas made sketches of the ballerinas first before painting them?

Edgar Degas, Drawing,
Famous Impressionist Artists
What are the characteristics of Impressionism?
Impressionists painted pictures of people that you would see everyday. They painted people like the local tavern owner, children waiting to play, or workers resting in bales of hay. They often used their own family and friends as subjects in their paintings.

Before Impressionism, painters usually placed the main subject of their painting in the center as the main focus. Impressionists usually emphasis the whole scene not just the person or main subject of the painting. Impressionist paintings look more like a photograph because it captures the main subject and everything around the subject making everything in the picture important. Photography started in the 1800s, which influenced the artists.

The artists used short brush strokes, applying paint thickly, to create an idea, or impression, of the subject. The artists often painted outdoors and worked quickly to capture the light and color in the moment before it changed. They were interested in how light changed the shadows and colors of their subjects. Sometimes they painted the same scene over during different times of the day and during different seasons.
Impressionism is a style of painting that began in Paris, France in the 1860s. A group of young talented artists including Claude Monet, August Renoir, Edgar Degas, Berthe Morisot, Alfred Sisley, and several other artists decided to form a new style of painting all their own. They called the group Cooperative and Anonymous Association of Painters, Sculptors, and Engravers. They held eight exhibitions starting in 1874. Impressionists wanted to capture a moment in time. Critics said that their work was just "impressions" of reality and the name stuck.
Pierre-Auguste Renoir,
A Girl with a Watering Can,
1876, oil on canvas,
Pierre-Auguste Renoir,
Child with Toys - Gabrielle and the Artist's Son, Jean,
1895-1896, oil on canvas,
Pierre-Auguste Renoir,
Oarsmen at Chatou
,1879, oil on canvas,
Pierre-Auguste Renoir,
Woman with a Cat
, 1875, oil on canvas, http;//
Pierre-Auguste Renoir,
Pont Neuf, Paris
,1872 oil on canvas
One of the most famous works by Renoir is his 1876
Le Bal au Moulin de la Galette
. This is an open-air scenery filled with people in a dance garden. These outdoors, colorful and experimental with light-type images, were very typical of his coming-of-age work (
Pierre-Auguste Renoir,
Bal du moulin de la Galette
,1876, oil on canvas,
Renoir's paintings are notable for their vibrant light and saturated color, most often focusing on people. The female 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 (
Describe the scenes you see in these paintings?

Do the scenes and subjects seem familiar to you? Why?

Explain what you like best about Renoir's paintings?

How do these paintings make you feel?

Claude Monet,
Haystacks, (sunset),
1890–1891, oil on canvas, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
He bridged Realism and Impressionism and gave the Impressionists credibility. Though considered a leader of Impressionism, he never fully embraced the movement, and never exhibited with other Impressionists of the time. (
He is the founder of the Impressionist movement. His painting,
"Impression, Sunrise"
exhibited at the first Impressionist exhibition in 1874, which lead to the name Impressionism. Through the practice of painting light and water
en plein air
(outdoors) Monet discovered that the color of shadows is not brown or black, but the reflected color of the objects surrounding them called 'diffuse reflection' (
Claude Monet,
Woman with a Parasol
- Madame Monet and Her Son (Camille and Jean Monet),1875, oil on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.,
Musical Composition
Claude Debussy was in his twenties when he produced his early works including
Deux arabesques, which is
considered one of the very early Impressionistic pieces of music, following the French visual art form.
Arabesque Andantino con moto
is the first of the pair of arabesques he composed between the years 1888 and 1891. The arabesque is a type of music generally for piano, which uses melodies to create the atmosphere of Arabic architecture. His view of a musical arabesque was a line curved in accordance with nature, and with his music he mirrored the celebrations of shapes in nature. It was the theme music to PBS's show
Star Gazer
and is played during the opening and end credits of the Spanish TVE series Planeta imaginario (

Claude Monet,
Impression, Sunrise
, 1872, oil on canvas , Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris,_Sunrise
Claude Monet,
Water Lilies and the Japanese bridge
, 1987-99, oil on canvas, Princeton University Art Museum
Describe the colors you see.

What colors are used for the shadows?

What time of day do you think the scenes take place?

Claude Monet,
1874, oil on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.
Claude Monet,
La Grenouillére,
1869, oil on canvas, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York,
Point out how Manet used repeating shapes in his art.

What colors are most used?

Describe the clothes the people are wearing.

Is there a common item in all of the photos?

What is it?

Alfred Sisley,
Street in Moret
, 1888, oil on canvas, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA
Alfred Sisley,
Sand Heaps
, 1875, oil on canvas
Berthe Morisot,
The Dining Room
, 1875, oil on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC,
Berthe Morisot,
The Cradle
,1872, Musée d'Orsay
Camille Pissarro,
Landscape at Pontoise
, 1874, oil on canvas,
Camille Pissarro,
Le grand noyer à l'Hermitage
, 1875, oil on canvas,
Mary Cassatt,
1894, oil on canvas,
What are the common subjects?
Describe the similarities and differences in these images.
Imagine yourself in the scene, what would you be doing? What would you be saying?
Edouard Manet,
The Railway
, 1872, oil on canvas,Édouard_Manet
Edouard Manet,
, 1874, oil on canvas, Metropolitan Museum of Art,Édouard_Manet

Edouard Manet,
At Father Lathuille,
1879, oil on canvas, Musée des Beaux-Arts, Tournai, Belgium
Edouard Manet,
1874, oil on canvas,
Edgar Degas,
The Little Fourteen–Year–Old Dancer
, 1881, wax, It is dressed in a real bodice, tutu and ballet slippers and has a wig of real hair. All but a hair ribbon and the tutu are covered in wax.
Background Image:
Claude Monet,
Water Lilies Evening Effect
, 1897,

Camille Pissarro
- Older than the rest of the group, he mentored and lead the younger artists. He displayed artwork in all 8 exhibitions.
Berthe Morisot
- One of the original Impressionist, she was the only women to display her artwork in the 1st exhibition.
Mary Cassatt
- An American painter who lived much of her life in France. She was good friends with Edgar Degas. She painted women and children.
Alfred Sisley
- He was an Impressionist landscape painter. He was the most consistent of the painter in his dedication to painting
en plein air
(outdoors). (
Claude Monet. (2014).

Deux arabesques. (2014). Wikipedia. http//

Degas, Edgar. (2014).
National Gallery of Art

History: Impressionism art for kids. (2014).

Impressionism. (2007).
Art smart 4 kids

Impressionism in the visual arts. (2012).
Impressionism: Art of Impressionists

Pierre-Auguste Renoir. (2014).
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