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Impressionist Paintings

by Bradley Brackenridge
Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe
by Bernadette Havenga

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So much has been written about how Impressionist paintings revolutionized the world of art, bringing tremendous awareness and conviction of the originality of the works of these artists. What began as a movement by a bunch of young radical painters in the mid 1870s grew into something that changed the way art was understood and perceived by thousands. That sums up the story of how Impressionist paintings and Impressionist artists were born.

These Impressionist painters contributed richly to the growth of this unconventional art form. For example, Renoir’s interest was in depicting women and children amidst stunning landscapes during which he conceptualized a new form called divisionism. By this form, Renoir omitted black from his palette and used only bright colors, which is a distinct feature of Impressionist art.

Monet would paint the same subject at different times of the day to give the effect of the changing qualities of light and capture the movement of that light. Meanwhile Edgar Degas pioneered the concept of accidental composition. His paintings were about the ballet, horse races and portraits of ordinary people.

By the second half of the 19th century, landscape Impressionist paintings became the most widely produced form of art. Most Impressionist paintings, though severely trashed by art critics of the time, withstood the test of time. This may be attributed to a mix of the fine techniques and the artists’ ability to progress beyond the stodgy and conformist styles of painting from before. They were also revolutionary in their concepts and perception of the way they viewed and experienced life not just their depiction of the world through art.

Path Breaking Techniques in Impressionist Art

Today’s painters continue to be inspired by the techniques used by the spontaneous Impressionist painters like Monet, Cezanne, Renoir, Edgar Degas and Manet. Most of their works reflected their interests and attitudes.

Some of their ground breaking techniques are:

Clearly, these great artists understood exactly how to reflect color, sunlight, and their spontaneous interpretation to life around them in a way that was far ahead of their times.