Impressionism Timeline  
  Impressionism * Neo-Impressionism * Post-Impressionism  

  1870 1880 1890
  1871 1881 1891
  1872 1882 1892
1863 1873 1883 1893
1864 1874 1884 1894
1865 1875 1885 1895
1866 1876 1886 1896
1867 1877 1887 1897
1868 1878 1888 1898
1869 1879 1889 1899
Impressionism Timeline
Impressionism * Neo-Impressionism * Post-Impressionism
Camille Pissarro
Edouard Manet (1832-83) Edgar Degas (1834-1917) Alfred Sisley (1839-99)

Paul Cezanne (1839-1906)
Claude Monet (1840-1826) Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919)

Frederic Bazille (1841-70)

Armand Guillaumin

Berthe Morisot (1841-95)

Federico Zandomeneghi (1841-1917)

Mary Cassatt (1844-1926) Giuseppe de Nittis
Max Liebermann
Gustave Caillebotte (1848-94) Peder Severin Kroyer (1851-1909) Vincent van Gogh
Charles Angrand
Henri-Edmond Cross (1856-1910)

John Singer Sargent (1856-1925)
Childe Hassam 

Georges Seurat (1859-91)
Louis Anquetin
(1861- 1932)
Theo van Rysselberghe (1862-1926) Paul Signac (1863-1935) Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) Emile Bernard (1868-1941)
"Olympia" - a Sensation

Manet - the father' of Impressionism causes a sensation with a painting accepted by the the Salon. As with 'Dejeuner sur I'herbe' of 1863, the subject (a recumbent Venus) is inspired by a classical precedent, but it has been reinterpreted in a contemporary manner. Manet's enthusiastic champion, Emile Zola, is one of the few critics to raise his voice in defence of this thoroughly modern nude.

Manet, in a fit of despondency, destroys several of his sketches.

15th Degas goes to stay with his mother's relatives in Bourg-en-Bresse.

21st Bazille invites Monet, who is hard up, to share a studio at 6 rue de Furstenberg, facing the church of St-Germain-des-Pres.


3rd Manet submits nine paintings to the dealer Louis Martinet's Societe des Beaux-Arts, but only two are accepted.

Pissarro takes a job as a bank messenger because he is in such desperate financial straits.
Monet meets and starts living with a nineteen-year-old girl from Lyons named Camille Doncieux.



Monet in Bed after his

The intimacy of this portrait of Monet -recovering in bed from the accident to his leg which he suffered shortly after his arrival at the inn in Chailly gives an idea of Bazille's affection for his friend.

Monet invites Bazille to join him at an inn in Chailly, near Barbizon, so they can paint together. Shortly after his friend's arrival, Monet injures his leg and is confined to bed. Cezanne meets Pissarro while studying at the Aeademie Suisse, an art school where there is no formal teaching.

1st The Royal Academy in London rejects two paintings that have been submitted by Manet.


7th Opening of the Salon. The exhibition includes Jesus Mocked by the Soldiers and Olympia by Manet; War Scene from the Middle Ages by Degas; Summer Evening and a portrait of Sisley's father by Renoir; three landscapes by Pissarro; and two works by Morisot. Also included are two of Monet's landscapes, The Lighthouse at Honfleur and The Headland of La Hive at Low Tide, which receive a favourable mention in the Gazette des Beaux-Arts and elsewhere - to the fury of Manet, who finds his name has been confused with Monet's by some of the critics. 18th Pissarro's first daughter, Jeanne-Rachel, is born.


1st Manet exhibits three still lifes Peonies in a Vase, Fruit on a Table and Still Life with Fish - at Cadart's gallery in the rue Richelieu.

15th The dealer Jean Durand-Ruel dies, and his son, Paul, takes over the management of the business in the rue de la Paix. Renoir meets Lise Trehot, who becomes his model and mistress.

Degas copies Whistler's The White Girl from a drawing sent by Whistler to Fantin-Latour.

5th Manet sets off on a tour of Spain, planned by Zacharie Astruc.

Gauguin enters the Merchant Marine as an apprentice pilot and makes his first trip on the Luzitano, from Le Havre to Rio de Janeiro.

14th Baudelaire, now living in Brussels to escape creditors, offers his portrait by Gourbet to Manet, who is looking after the poet's interests in Paris. Manet declines and suggests other potential buyers.


26th Degas copies a Sebastiano del Piombo drawing in the Louvre.

28th Manet has a slight attack of cholera.


Study for Dejeuner sur

In 1865 Monet decided to paint a large picture on the theme Manet had tackled m his Dejeuner sur I'herbe (p.27). The location he chose for it was a wood near Marlotte where he was painting with Bazille, who served as a model for at least two of the male figures. It was Monet's most ambitious plan air project to date, but only two fragments of the finished painting have survived, together with this preparatory study.
MANET Olympia

Criticism of Manet's Olympia was directed as much against the 'ugliness' of the model as against its stylistic novelty.

It is easy to understand the shock provoked by this painting when it is compared with the pictures by academic painters that were habitually hung in the Salon, with their anonymous faces, contrived poses and total insulation from contemporary reality.

The sensation provoked by Olympia at the Salon of 1865 was even greater than that which had greeted Dejeuner sur I'herbe A - few critics showing the perspicacity of Zola, who in 1867 published the following apostrophe to Manet:

For you a picture is but an opportunity for analysis. You wanted a nude, and you took Olympia, the first to come along; you wanted bright, luminous patches, and the bouquet provided them;you wanted black patches, and you added a black woman and a black cat. What does all this mean? You hardly know, nor do I. But I know that you succeeded admirably in creating a work of painting, of great painting, and in translating into a special language the verities of light and shade, the realities of persons and things.

EMILE ZOLA, L'Artiste, January 1st, 1867

More common were sentiments such as the following:

What's this yellow-bellied odalisque, this vile model picked up goodness knows where and representing Olympia?

JULES CLARETIE, L'Artiste, May, 1865

The crowd, as at the morgue, throngs in front of the gamy 'Olympia' and the horrible 'Ecce Homo' of M. Manet.

PAUL DE SAINT-VICTOR, La Presse, May 28th, 1865

'Olympia' can be understood from no point of view, even if you take it for what it is, a puny model stretched out on a sheet. The colour of the flesh is dirty, the modelling non-existent. The shadows are indicated by comparatively large smears of blacking. What's to be said for the negress, who brings a bunch of flowers wrapped in some paper, or for the black cat that leaves its dirty pawmarks on the bed? We would still forgive the ugliness were it truthful, carefully studied, heightened by some effect of colour.
The least beautiful woman has bones, muscles, skin, heightened by some sort of colour. Here
is nothing, we are sorry to say, but the desire to attract attention at any price.

THEOPHILE GAUTIER, Le Moniteur universe/, June 24th, 1 865

Works by academic painters purchased
by the State at the Salon of 1865.

ZACHARIE ASTRUC Writer and painter

Zacharie Astruc (18331907) was the writer, critic, painter and sculptor whose verses were reproduced in the Salon catalogue entry for Manet's Olympia. They give some indication of his meagre poetic gifts:

Quand, lasse de songer, Olympia s'eveille,
Le printemps entre аи bras du doux messager noir,
C'est I'esclave a la nuit amoureuse pareilk,
Qui veut Jeter lejour, de'licieux a voir,
L'auguste jeune fille en qui laflamme veille.

When, tired of dreams, Olympia wakes up,
Spring enters on the gentle black messenger's arm.
It is the slave, akin to the amorous night,
Who wishes to greet the day, delicious to see,
The august young woman in whom the flame keeps watch.


MANET Zacharie Astruc 1866
Astruc's most important creative work is the statue of The Mask Peddler in the Luxembourg Gardens. His greatest achievement in the context of Impressionism, however, lies in the contribution he made to Manet's early career.

The two first met in 1854 or 1855, through Fantin-Latour, and became close friends by which time Astruc was already eulogizing 'the new school' in his writings, paying particular attention to Manet. He figures in the latter's Music in the Tmleries Gardens and in Fantin-Latour's A Studio in the Batignolles Quarter, where he is shown turning towards Manet. In 1866 he introduced Monet to Manet, and in 1867 was largely responsible for the preface to the catalogue of the one-man exhibition that Manet staged in a specially built pavilion near the entrance to the Universal Exhibition. Astruc exhibited at the first Impressionist exhibition in 1874, though the nature of his contribution is not recorded.