AP European History: Impressionism In The Nineteenth Century

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AP European History January 15, 2014 Impressionism In the nineteenth century, a popular art movement called Impressionism began in France. After the Franco-Prussian War, most of the French cities began to rebuild their structures, making the people and artists appreciate the natural scenery of their country even more. Because of this, a large majority of the paintings done in this Impressionist style have a subject material of mainly outdoor scenes; for example, open fields, weathered barns, city streets, or rivers. Another main characteristic of these paintings are the use of bright, vibrant colors. Impressionism is often described as an art movement interested in “capturing the fleeting qualities of light, color, and atmosphere”, (Impressionism,…show more content…
It helps by making the most important part of the picture stand out to the viewers and capturing their attention. There are three main paintings done by Degas, Renoir, and Monet—a few of the painters that helped build up Impressionism to a point of prominence—that contain all of these characteristics. In Edgar Degas’ painting, Prima Ballerina, the most important part of it is the ballerina. Degas was able to make this quite obvious by blurring and distorting the people and scenery behind her. Degas also used very light pastel colors in the background to make the ballerina stand out more in the painting, as well as making her seem like she is letting off light and making the work seem, in general, much more relaxing and carefree. Another famous Impressionist painting done during the eighteen hundreds was Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s Bal du Moulin da la Galette. In this painting, there is “a richness of form, a fluidity of brush stroke, and a flickering light.” Many bright colors are also used by Renoir, giving off an air of happiness amongst the people dancing, drinking, and…show more content…
Renoir makes the trees and party decorations in the background stand out easily by painting in light colors such as white, blue, and green and having them contrast beautifully with the dark clothing of the people. The sunlight is also contrasted with the clothing, almost making it so that the viewer can picture the ambience at that moment. The third painting, La Promenade, painted by Claude Monet, is one of the most famous Impressionist paintings of this time period. Only blue, green, brown and other natural colors are used in this entire painting, giving the viewer’s a feeling of quietness and comfortableness. Also, the lady with the umbrella occupies most of the space of the canvas, signaling that she is the main focus of the work. Another way you can find this out is, just like in Prima Ballerina, the objects and person behind the woman are slightly unfocused in comparison to

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