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 Wider World

Despite his recent financial setback, Durand-Ruel is more than ever determined to promote the artists and to sell and exhibit their works abroad. He organizes shows in Brussels and Amsterdam, but meets with reluctance from the artists themselves when the opportunity arises to stage an exhibition in New York.


16th Antonin Proust and the Manet family organize a banquet at Pere Lathuille's restaurant to celebrate the anniversary of Manet's retrospective exhibition.
Monet writes to Pissarro: 'Everyone thinks it is ridiculous and unnecessary, but everyone will be there and nobody feels able to refuse.' Pissarro does refuse to attend, considering it too 'official'.

22nd Exhibition of works at La Vie modeme by Eva Gonzales.

Pink Morning

Of the eighty-five works shown at Gonzales' retrospective exhibition at La Vie modeme, twenty-one (including Pink Morning) were in pastel. The sitter was probably the artist's sisterjeanne.
Duret publishes Critique de I'avant-garde - a collection of his reviews and other writings on art.

Cezanne suffers from neuralgia.

6th Delacroix exhibition opens at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts.

21st Renoir's first son, Pierre, is born. The address given on the birth certificate is 18 rue Houdon. His godfather is Caillebotte.

28th Theo van Gogh sells a landscape by Monet to the collector Victor Desfosses.

Gauguin has a six-day exhibition at the Society of the Friends of Art in Copenhagen, which is not a success.
Pissarro establishes close links with the anarchist movement.

22nd Degas sells three pastels to Durand-Ruel for 2000 francs.

Photograph of a Salon jury (c. 1885), showing Tattegrain, Cormon, Dantan, Lefebvre, Tony Robert-Fleury, Maignan and other well-known academic artists.

4th Monet exhibits ten paintings at Georges Petit's annual Exposition Internationale.
Opening of the Salon. Out of the 38,515 paintings submitted, 1243 are accepted; of these ninety-eight are by Americans, forty-seven by Belgians, thirty-one by Germans and thirty-four by British artists. The exhibition is seen by approximately 238,000 visitors.

18th Degas buys Oedipus and the Sphinx, a small painting by Ingres, at a sale of works from the collection of the Comte de Brandiere at the Hotel Drouot.
Gauguin bitterly attacks Degas' attitudes in a letter to Pissarro, complaining that 'his conduct is becoming more and more absurd.'
Monet paints floral decorations for the door panels of Durand-Ruel's house at 35 rue de Rome.

The doors of Durand-Ruel's salon
painted with floral decorations by Monet.

Gauguin returns to Paris with his son, Clovis, and lives in the Impasse Fremin.

4th Durand-Ruel holds an exhibition of Impressionist works at the Hotel du Grand Miroir in Brussels (which has a considerably impact on the new generation of Belgian painters).

7th Monet tries to exchange one of his own paintings for a Degas through Durand-Ruel.

8th Renoir goes to stay at La Roche-Guyon, near Giverny.

15th Cezanne, Hortense Fiquet and their son, Paul, go to stay with Renoir.

Cezanne paints at Gardanne, in Provence.

3rd The American Art Association invites Durand-Ruel to mount an Impressionist exhibition in New York. He accepts,
but the painters are reluctant to participate. (Manet once said that he thought little of :the land of the Yankees', and added 'In Paris alone is there any taste.' It seems that the other Impressionists agreed.)

12th Durand-Ruel stages an exhibition in Amsterdam of Impressionist paintings.


25th Cezanne tells Zola that he has started frequenting brothels in Aix-en-Provence: 'I pay; it's a dirty word, but I need relaxation, and even at this price I must have it.'

28th Degas visits the Halews in Dieppe and meets the British painter Walter Sickert, with whom he becomes friendly.

30th Berthe Morisot and her husband visit Holland and Belgium.

A photograph taken in 1885 in Dieppe showing Degas (extreme right) with Sickert and members of the Halevy and Blanche families.

Renoir visits Essoyes, his mistress Aline Charigot's home village in southern Champagne.
Pissarro meets Signac and then Seurat at Guillaumin's studio. He is deeply impressed by the stylistic innovations of their work.

Monet goes to stay with the singer and collector Jean-Baptiste Faure at Etretat, where he remains till December.


5th Durand-Ruel writes a long letter to L'Evenement rebutting allegations of forger)' made by Goupil.

Berthe Morisot begins to hold regular soirees for friends that are artists or writers, including Mallarme.

Portrait of Theodore Duret

Manet and Duret first met by chance in a Madrid restaurant in 1865 and became firm friends. In 1868 Duret (a staunch Republican), together with Zola, Pelletier and Jules Ferry, founded La Tribune fiangaise, and Manet frequently visited their offices.
In February Theodore Duret published Critique de I'avant-garde, a collection of his writings on art, which included his reviews of the Salon and some of the introductory pieces that he had written for the catalogues of various exhibitions. In the following extract he describes the uncomprehending response that an innovative artist is likely to receive from the public:
Only yesterday people were poking fun at Courbet, but now they praise him to the skies and bum incense on his altar. But then his work has become a familiar sight; people have got used to him. and thus the endeavours of routine (which scoffs at anything that is new) and of mediocrity (which hates anything that is original) have now been concentrated on the latest arrival, Manet. We shall therefore stop in front of the canvases of M. Manet - but we are not alone. Quite the contrary: we are surrounded by a crowd, and are immediately aware that the good public, which only a little while ago was entranced by even the most insignificant imitations, here mocks our original artist just because of his originality and sense of invention.

'Oh, how poorly he draws!' (This has been said of Delacroix for thirty years.)

'But this is not properly finished! These are mere sketches!' (Only yesterday they were saying that about Corot.)

'Good God! How ugly these people are! What horrible models!' (This is still more or less a valid summary of bourgeois opinion about Millet.)

And thus it is going to be for M. Manet until eventually the public gets used to the combination of qualities and faults, of light and shadow, which make up his personality, and will accept him, going on to deride some other newcomer.
When, in August 1885, Cezanne told Zola about his brothel-visi activities he was 46 and had been living with the artists' model Hortense Fiquet for sixteen years (they would eventually marry in 1886 . Nevertheless, even after their son was born, Cezanne carefully concealed their liaison from his family.

The pattern was not an unfamiliar one among the Impressionists. Although Manet married the Dutch pianist Suzanne Leenhoff in 1863. for a considerable time he was chary about introducing her to his friends in Paris and passed off their son Leon (born in 1852) as Suzanne's brother.

Madame Cezanne in a Red Armchair

One of Cezanne's most colourful portraits of Hortense Fiquet, this work was painted around the time of his second and last showing with the Impressionists.

Clearly, wives and mistresses from the lower classes or demi-monde were not presentable in polite society. Pissarro, for example, started an affair with his mother's maid, Julie Vellay, in 1860, and their first child was born in 1865. But, although he eventually married Julie in London in 1871, she never participated in his social life. For the same reason, although Sisley had been living with the florist Marie-Adelaide-Eugenie Lescouezec since 1867, he only married her thirty years later, shortly before her death. The two cases suggest that if Britons went to France for illegitimate experiences, Frenchmen came to Britain to legitimize their liaisons.

Monet's matrimonial life was rather different. In 1878, after his patron Ernest Hoschede was declared bankrupt, Alice Hoschede and their six children came to live with the Monets. (Ernest subsequently went off to Paris to pursue 'an impecunious bachelor life' and wrote a booklet on the Salon of 1882.) When Monet's wife, Camille, died in 1879, Alice continued living with him, in effect replacing Camille, and remained in that socially ambiguous situation until 1892, when she and Monet were united in marriage following Ernest's death.

Renoir's attitude towards women hardly coincided with the adoration of their beauty expressed in his paintings. According to his son Jean, when somebody mentioned a woman lawyer, he retorted 'I can't see myself getting into bed with a lawyer. I like women best when they don't know how to read, and when they wipe their babies' bottoms themselves.' On another occasion, he told his friend Lestringuez 'What women may gain from education they lose in other fields. I am afraid that the generations to come won't know how to make love well, and that would be most unfortunate for those who haven't painting.'

Portrait of Aline Charigot

Probably painted at Essoyes after the birth of their first son, Pierre, this is one of the few portraits Renoir painted of his mistress and future wife, although she often posed for his group subjects.

The last phrase is significant. He once said 'It's with my brush I make love.' He wanted his paintings to evoke the physical sense of the model, to make the spectator want to 'stroke a breast or a back' Aline Charigot, whom he met in 1880 and married in 1890 (five years after the birth of their first son), was a country girl who had come to Paris to learn dressmaking. Possessed of a voracious appetite, she was buxom in early life, but later grew very fat and finally died four years before her husband from a heart attack. Renoir who, in contrast to his wife, was slightly built, restive and in many ways unsure of himself -accepted Aline's dominant position in their household, but kept her away from the art world because of her humble origins. Once, watching a boy and a girl quarrelling, Renoir told the writer Georges Riviere that he was sure the girl would win and Riviere couldn't help noticing that he 'took pleasure in noting the inevitable victory of the woman over the man.'

Degas' timidity with women was commented on by many of his friends, including Manet. Perhaps as a result of this timidity, two women were to dominate his life. The first was the opera singer Rose Caron, with whom he was never intimate, but whose performances he attended with unflagging devotion sometimes going to the opera as frequently as twelve times a month, and travelling as far as Strasbourg to hear her perform. The second was his housekeeper, Zoe Closier, who during the latter years of his life looked after him like an attendant dragon, keeping visitors at bay, bullying him about his domestic affairs, producing meals of gastronomic horror, and combining the roles of nurse and companion. Degas' preoccupation with revealing the intricacies of female toilet, coupled with his remarkably frank and brutal pastels of brothel life, would seem to indicate a desire at worst to humiliate women, at best to strip them of any romantic ideas of untouchable beauty.