IWT1 - Humanities
January 12, 2013
Impressionism and Post Impressionism are very unique periods within the art movement and heavily influenced 21st century art. Impressionist Artists were viewed as “radicals” or breakaway artist for their rejection of the traditional cultural climate of the times. Prior to the impressionist, during the post 1848 Revolution period of Napoleon III period, the “Realist” movement had been the dominant political and socially accepted artistic flavor. Realist subjects encompassed normal working class people and real life themes as seen through the eyes of the observer.
Impressionist moved away from the rigid structure of Realism (Realist ...view middle of the document...
The Cooperative, founded by Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, and Sisley began to exhibit their work independent of the Académie’s annual exhibition. It was at the Cooperative’s premier exhibition that Claude Monet’s Impression Soleil (Impression, Sunrise) painting was displayed, and the moniker “Impressionism” coined as a result of the exposition.
The Impression Soleil painting illustrated a misty sunrise occurring in the background of boats in a harbor. Although the subject was simple in nature, it is the lack of detail, colliding of features, subtle indicators of movement and opaque background hues that characterize the painting. The Cooperative and Anonymous Association’s works continued in the vein of earlier plein-air (outdoor) style of painting and officially signified the beginning of the impressionist period. Although public opinion was
initially mixed, the impressionist began to enjoy success by 1875 and by 1880 Monet, Renoir and Pissarro were financially secure.
The social climate of 1885 - 1910 encouraged artist to look away from Paris, the city as a means for subject matter and embrace personal experiences of the painter. Similar to the Impressionists seeking to break out of the bonds imposed by the Realist movement, Post-Impressionist desired to step outside of the confines of impressionism. The “Salon de Paris”, had lost much of its influence within the Parisian artistic community and the “Cooperative and Anonymous Association of Painters, Sculptors, and Engravers” had emboldened artists’ individuality and provided a platform to display ones art. As additional forums became available, artist continued to seek greater self-expression through their art. The post-impressionist began to make an impact within the art community by the use of these new venues, which allowed them to publicly showcase their canvasses.
Postimpressionist sought to extend impressionism and continued the use of vivid colors, thick application of paint, and distinctive brush strokes. They felt that impressionists had allowed their preoccupations with technique, and the effects of natural light, to overshadow the importance of subject matter. A few major differences were that Postimpressionists chose to emphasize geometric forms, also to distort form for expressive effect, and to use unnatural or arbitrary color. Postimpressionist other differences included organized structure, and shocking effect for subject matter, versus impressionist vagueness, lack of visual perception, and rigidness in subject themes. Lastly, postimpressionist artist instilled their paintings with a greater degree of passion, emotion and deeper expression.
Although Post-impressionist desired altering their expressions in painting, they continued to maintain many of the same techniques and qualities used by the impressionist (Bowness, 1979). Postimpressionist maintained similarities with impressionist through the use of bright colors, light, thick brush strokes and use of mixed paints....