The National Gallery has three important paintings of bathers: Monet’s Bathers at La Grenouillère, Seurat’s Bathers at Asnières, and Cézanne’s Bathers (Les Grandes Baigneuses). Although made by French artists within a period of about thirty years, all three look very different; this film explains how this came about.
Using Monet, Seurat and Cézanne as anchor points, it shows how nineteenth-century French artists exploited new subject matter, such as the bourgeoisie at leisure, new ways of composing paintings and depicting spatial form, and new ways of applying paint, to produce a variety of ‘modern’ works. It explores the development of French painting in the second half of the century, including the work of Ingres, as context for the uproar that these later developments caused.
The National Gallery’s collection presents a unique opportunity to explore the development of Impressionist painting. In this DVD Louise Govier, from National Gallery Education, introduces this period through works by artists including Ingres, Delaroche, Courbet, Millet, Corot, Boudin, Puvis de Chavannes, Moreau, Manet, Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, Sisley, Degas, Seurat, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Rousseau and Cézanne.