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)
The One-Man Shows

The feuds and struggles surrounding the most recent group exhibitions have led Durand-Ruel to believe that one-man shows might be more successful. Degas - always at loggerheads with his fellow artists -won't participate, but Monet, Pissarro, Renoir and Sisley have shows in quick succession at the dealer's Paris gallery.

Degas refuses to join Durand-Ruel's scheme for a series of one-man exhibitions by each of the Impressionists to be held on the mezzanine floor of 9 boulevard de la Madeleine.
Gauguin resigns from his job with a bank, and declares 'From now on I paint ever day.'


14th Durand-Ruel buys A Gentleman-Amateurs' Horse Race: Before the Start (painted in 1862 and retouched in 1882) from Degas for 5200 francs.


1st Monet has a one-man show at Durand-Ruel's gallery in the boulevard de la Madeleine. (At the majority of Durand-Ruel's one-man exhibitions, there are around seventy pictures on view.)


1st Renoir has a one-man show at Durand-Ruel's gallery. In his introduction to the catalogue, Theodore Duret writes: 'I regard M. Claude Monet as the Impressionist group's most typical landscape painter, and M. Renoir as its most typical figure painter.'

15th Durand-Ruel puts on an exhibition by the 'Society of Impressionists' at Dowdeswell's Galleries, 133 New Bond Street, London. Exhibitors include Boudin, Cassatt, Degas, Manet, Morisot, Pissarro and Sisley. Degas' A Gentleman-Amateurs' Horse Race: Before the Start is priced at 400, Manet's The Pont de L'Europe at 400 and Renoir's Dance at Bougival (opposite) at 600.

20th Manet's left leg is amputated because of a circulatory disease.

30th Manet dies at the age of 51.

RENOIR "Dance at Bougival"; RENOIR "Dance in the Country"; RENOIR "Dance in the City"

In 1882-83 Renoir painted three pictures of dancing couples, each located in a different place - the city, the country and at Bougival.
At the time very specific social nuances were attributed to the various places of entertainment in Paris. Bougival exemplified a venue frequented by 'decent' couples who were neither oversophisticated nor unduly concerned with sexual encounters.

The woman was Suzanne Valadon, who also posed for Renoir and was the mother of Maurice Utrillo.

Profile portrait of Suzanne Valadon, by Renoir.
Suzanne Valadon

The Hangover (Suzanne Valadon), by Toulouse-Lautrec.

Portrait of Suzanne Valadon, by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

Monet settles in Giverny with Mme Hoschede.

1st Cezanne goes to L'Estaque, where he stays till November.

3rd Opening of the Salon.

Renoir exhibits Madame Clapisson (Lady with a Fan).
Whistler's The Artist's Mother is enthusiastically received.
Pissarro has a one-man show at Durand-Ruel's gallery.
Manet is buried at Passy. His funeral is attended by, among others, Duret, Monet, Antonin Proust and Zola.
5th Eva Gonzales dies, aged 34, after childbirth.

Pissarro recommends Huysmans' recently published L'Art moderne to his son Lucien.


1st Sisley has a one-man show at Durand-Ruel's gallery.

3rd The first exhibition of work by the Impressionists to be seen in Germany opens at the Gurlitt Galleries in Berlin, creating a sensation.

7th Gauguin, accompanied by his family, spends three weeks with Pissarro at Osny.
While visiting the Valpincons at Menil-Hubert, Degas produces preparatory studies for a portrait of Hortense, the family's eldest daughter. Renoir visits Gaillebotte at Petit-Gennevilliers and paints a portrait of Gaillebotte's mistress, Charlotte Berthier. Sisley decides to move from Moret-sur-Loing to Les Sablons, a neighbouring district.

A drawing produced in 1883 when Gauguin and Pissarro were working together at Osny, near Pontoise.

Pissarro's sketch of Gauguin is on the left, Gauguin's of Pissarro on the right.

The artists' early relationship had been that of teacher and pupil, but by 1893 Gauguin was beginning to distance himself from the older man.
Hortense Valpincon as a Child

Degas was captivated by Hortense Valpincon and painted this portrait of her as a child in 1871. He attempted to paint her again while visiting the family in 1883, but only-produced a series of drawings and pastels, most of which have disappeared.

3rd The first important group of Impressionist works to be seen in the USA is on show at the American Exhibition of Foreign Products, Arts and Manufacture, held in the Mechanics' Building in Boston. Durand-Ruel has sent two Manets, three Monets, six Pissarros, three Renoirs and three Sisleys to Boston for the exhibition, and the catalogue has a drawing of Manet's The Entombment of Christ on the front cover. The pictures, however, fail to sell and are not even mentioned by the press. 6th Renoir sets off on a six-week visit to Jersey and Guernsey, accompanied by his mistress, Aline Charigot, and the artist Paul Lhote.

Formation in Brussels of Les Vingt, a group of progressive artists led by the lawyer, journalist and critic Octave Maus.

Berthe Morisot and her husband (Manet's brother Eugene) start preparing for the posthumous sale of Manet's works. Renoir moves to 18 rue Houdon, off the boulevard Glichy.

Gauguin visits Pissarro, who is staying in Rouen.


3rd An 'art loan' exhibition, arranged to raise funds for the purchase of a pedestal for the Statue of Liberty, opens at the American Academy of Design, New York.

William Merritt Chase and Carrol Beckwith, who are the selectors, contribute works by Degas, Manet and other Impressionists.

These, together with works of a related kind which are lent by other American collectors, form the focal point of the show. The exhibition marks the start of more-widespread American interest in Impressionist art.

8th Monet and Renoir tour the Mediterranean coast from Marseilles to Genoa, visiting Cezanne in Aix-en-Provence on their way back.
Engraving of the opening of the 'art loan'
exhibition in New York, from The Graphic.
The publication in 1883 of Joris-Karl Huysmans' L'Art moderne (a collection of art criticism mostly about the Salons and the Impressionists) marked the emergence before a larger audience of a writer who was to have considerable influence upon public taste - an influence reinforced by his reputation as a novelist.

Title page of Huysman's L'Art moderne, 1883.

Huysmans' attitudes were literary rather than visual, and his support for the Impressionists was founded on the Realist beliefs that had informed his earlier writings rather than on an awareness of the artistic innovations of the Impressionist movement. In 1889 L'Art moderne was followed by Certains, a second collection of writings on art.

On Pissarro

M. Pissarro may now be classed among the number of remarkable and audacious painters we possess. If he can preserve his perceptive, delicate and nimble eye, we shall certainly have in him the most original landscapist of our time.

On Gauguin's 'Study of a Nude'
(painted in 1880 and exhibited at the sixth Impressionist exhibition)

I do not hesitate to assert that among contemporary artists who have painted nudes, none - and I do not except Courbet from these artists - has produced such a vivid note of realism as Gauguin in his nude (p. 125). Here is a girl of our time, a girl who doesn't pose for an audience, who is neither lascivious nor affected, who is simply concerned with mending her clothes. Oh, the nude woman! Who else has shown her as she is real, without premeditated arrangements, without adulteration of her features?

On Berthe Morisot

These lifeless sketches reek of a heady, mundane elegance, and perhaps it is right to use the word hysterical to characterize these surprising improvisations.

On Degas' 'The Dancing Examination' (c.1880)

A dancer bends over retying a lace, and another has her head on her chest, her hooked nose protruding from her mop of red hair. Near them are a friend in street clothes, vulgar, her cheeks covered in freckles, her shock of hair stuffed under a hat bristling with red feathers, and a woman, somebody's mother, with the puffy face of an old concierge, wearing a shawl the sort of person who chats during the intervals. What truthfulness!

What sense of life! See how realistic these figures are, how accurately the light bathes the scene. Look at the expressions on these faces, the boredom of painful mechanical effort, the scrutiny of the mother whose desires are fulfilled whenever the body of her daughter begins its laborious efforts, the indifference of the friends to the familiar fatigue. All these things are noted with analytical insight, at once subtle and cruel.

On Caillebotte's 'View Across a Balcony'
(painted in 1880 and exhibited at the fifth Impressionist exhibition)

View Across a Balcony

Huysmans described this picture as epitomizing bourgeois life in late nineteenth-century Paris. The figures have no contact with each other and exude a sense of boredom, unrelieved by their material wealth. The painting was admired by Signac, who ten years later produced a work using the same subject The Parisian Sunday.

A woman standing at a window turns her back to us, and a man sitting in an armchair, seen in profile, reads the newspaper near her - that's all, but what is truly magnificent is the frankness, the life of this scene.
The woman, who looks at the street, palpitates, moves. One sees her lower back move under the marvellous dark-
blue velvet that covers it. If you touch her with your finger, she will yawn, turn round, exchange an empty
word with her husband, who appears to be only vaguely interested in the article he is reading.

It is a moment of contemporary life, frozen in time. The couple is bored, as so often happens in life. The
odour of a well-to-do middle-class household emanates from this interior. Caillebotte is the painter of the
bourgeoisie of finance and business in their hours of relaxation, able to provide for their own needs, without
being very rich, living near the rue Lafayette, or near the boulevard Haussmann.

As for the execution of this canvas, it is simple, sober - I would say almost classical. There are neither fluttering brush strokes, nor fireworks, nor intentions merely indicated, nor weaknesses of any kind.