Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Artist of the Month, RENOIR

Renoir Pierre-Auguste Renoir
February 25, 1841
1Thomas Cole, 1801
2William E. Artis, 1914
3Norman Rockwell, 1894
4Fernand Léger, 1881
5Alison Saar, 1956
8John Ruskin, 1819
8Franz Marc, 1880
9Robert Morris, 1931
10Mary Lovelace O’Neill, 1942
11William Henry Fox Talbot, 1800
12Max Beckmann, 1884
12Joan Mitchell, 1925
12William Wegman, 1943
13Grant Wood, 1892
15Charles-François Daubigny, 1817
17Raphaelle Peale, 1774
17Hung Liu, 1948
18Louis Comfort Tiffany, 1848
18Max Klinger, 1857
19Constantin Brancusi, 1876
20Ansel Adams, 1902
22Rembrandt Peale, 1778
22Horace Pippin, 1888
23Tom Wesselmann, 1931
24Charles LeBrun, 1619
24Winslow Homer, 1836
25Pierre-Auguste Renoir, 1841
26Honoré Victorin Daumier, 1808
29Augusta Savage, 1892

Renoir began painting flowers on porcelain to help his family survive financially when he was thirteen years old. He enrolled in night painting classes to refine his techniques when he could afford it. Eventually, he banded with classmates Monet, Sisley, Bazille and other Impressionists. They rebelled against the Salon painting styles which harked back to classical themes. The Impressionists were more interested in capturing everyday scenes and the shifting effects of light. At first the Impressionists were derided, but eventually achieved recognition and success. After exploring Impressionism for several years, Renoir visited Italy and was swept away by the art of Raphael, a famous Renaissance painter. After he returned to France, he began to paint people, especially beautiful women!  He painted into his 80's, never letting crippling arthritis stop him. His assistants used to tie his paint brushes to his hands so he could continue painting. I admire his enthusiasm and perseverance. We should raise a glass of (French) wine to salute this fantastic painter on his birthday.

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