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Renoir: Impressionist, Luncheon Of The Boating Party, Nude Down The Sun

993 words - 4 pages

Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) is one of the most famed artists of the nineteenth century Impressionist movement. In exploring Renoir's works, it becomes evident that society had a significant influence on his style and subject matter. Although he is primarily known for his work within the Impressionist style, Renoir's works are not white noise among Impressionist works. Alongside other famed Impressionists, such as Manet, Monet and Degas, Renoir founded the Impressionist style.His works reflect many of the ideals of the Impressionist movement. With great emphasis on light, shadow and movement, form was not of great concern to the Impressionists. Although the Impressionistic ideals were significant to his works, Renoir was also interested in maintaining form, much like the Post-Impressionists (J. Paul Getty Trust). In Renoir's earlier career as an artist, his figures were much less defined in keeping with the Impressionist style. Although one is able to decipher what the subjects are, upon looking closely, Renoir's painterly, choppy brushstrokes create a mesh of colors and fragmented figures without distinct outlines. The subjects seem to bleed into each other, as well as their surroundings. However, in Renoir's later career, his Classical training became evident when he opted to create clearer, crisper figures, abandoning the Impressionist style.While landscapes were the primary subject matter of many Impressionist artists, such as Monet, Renoir seemed to have a greater interest in capturing people. Although he did paint some landscapes and still lives, his greatest works involved human experiences. Perhaps the greatness of his works can be credited to a greater passion of human interaction and life. Perhaps his great passion can be attributed to the immersion of himself into these situations.Known mostly for his lighthearted depictions of women, children, flowers and outdoor scenes, often packed with people enjoying themselves, Renoir never created a gloomy painting (Strickland, 1992). He once said, "A picture must be an amiable thing, joyous and pretty -- yes, pretty! There are enough troublesome things in life without inventing others," (Strickland, 1992, p. 104). Perhaps the cheery disposition of his paintings was the result of his advice to "Paint with joy, with the same joy that you would make love to a woman" (Strickland, 1992, p. 97). Regardless of whether the latter had an impact on his works, one thing is for sure, Renoir's use of color, in combination with his subject matter, definitely helped to create a cheery disposition. By all accounts, Renoir refused to use black in his paintings, theorizing, "It's not a color," and it "punched a hole in the canvas" (Strickland, 1992, p. 104). Instead, Renoir used dark blue to substitute black.Like Boucher and Fragonard, Renoir was infatuated with women. Renoir created numerous nudes, meticulously painting to create the perfect rosy hue for the subject's skin. He once said, "I consider my...

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