artist tuesday: pierre-auguste renoir

I was having a really hard time deciding which artist to choose for today since a) I haven’t had Artist Tuesday in an absurdly long time, and b) I wanted it to be appropriate for all my recent travels. So, I have chosen Renoir for a number of reasons. Not only is he one of my absolute favorite painters (Impressionist, duh), but Katy and I went to his house during our last couple days in Paris! The Musee de Montmatre tells the story of Paris’s artistic neighborhood during its height in the late 1800s. Posters by Toulouse Lautrec adorn the walls, and old letters and books filled glass cases. It was a wonderful place.

Anyway, Katy and I were overjoyed when we discovered that we were wondering around Renoir’s old house (where he lived with a dozen other artists off-and-on over the years). I do love him so. His “Dance in the Country” is the first painting that I truly fell in love with. For years it was my favorite, and today I’m happy to say that I finally got to see it in person. I absolutely love Renoir, and I hope you do too!

Bal du moulin de la Galette

I love this series, not only because they are beautiful, but because of the story behind them. Now, I wish they were in order, but Dance in the Country (left, my favorite!) was the last of the three that he painted. If you compare the women, you’ll notice that the Dance in the Country woman is the only one smiling and looking happy, while the other two don’t really look like they’re having a good time. This shows that Renoir (the man in the paintings) was happiest and most comfortable with her. Sometime after this paintings completion, the two were married!

La Grenouillère

The Swing

Luncheon of the Boating Party

Dancer

“Why shouldn’t art be pretty? There are enough unpleasant things in the world.”

-Pierre-Auguste Renoir

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