HUMAN PORTRAITS EN PLEIN AIR-2

RENOIR
Girl with a watering can
(1876)

By the mid 1870s, Renoir had painted a variety of people in his "high Impressionist" style.  Such portraits used Renoir's characteristic feathery brushstrokes, which resulted in softened features and "dissolving" contours of figures into the surrounding colored atmosphere.  In Girl with a Watering Can (1876), reality is filtered through Renoir's sensibilities, and his own vision of childhood is reflected through the innocence of the little girl's face.




RENOIR
Moulin de la Galette
(1876)

Renoir forged a style of rendering the life of his own day.  He gave contemporary life a touch of social glamour.  He himself often spent Sunday afternoons in the public dancing hall at the Moulin de la Galette in Montmartre.  Instead of painting professional models, he painted young girls who came to dance.  He even rented a studio nearby so that he was able to work in the open air, transporting the canvas to the dance hall each morning and making the picture on location.

Moulin de la Galette was the first painting by Renoir to contain a large group of figures.  He used the effect of dappled sunlight which he had practiced onindividual figure studies, and applied it onto the entire composition.  In this painting, Renoir captured an air of transience common to plein-air painting.  He employed the effects produced by dappled light striking through trees; his light, fluttery, feathery brushstrokes produced an image of a carefree, pleasurable atmosphere--a hallmark of his human portraits.


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