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Pierre-Auguste Renoir

"An artist should only listen to his true master: nature."


Notes of biography

Pierre-Auguste Renoir was born in Limoges in 1841; his family, of modest means, moved to Paris in 1844. He was barely 13 years old when he began working as an apprentice (making porcelain, painted fabrics, etc.). Attracted to painting, Renoir took a drawing course in a municipal workshop. In 1859, he decorated a number of Parisian cafés with mythological scenery. From 1860 until 1864, he received permission to copy works of art in the Louvre, where he admired the work of Watteau, Boucher and Fragonard. Renoir attended the Ecole de Beaux-Arts, where he met Fantin-Latour and formed friendships with Bazille, Sisley and Monet, with whom he painted outdoors in the surroundings of Paris; they all lived together in 1867.
Shortly after 1870, Monet introduced them to Manet, who would have a seminal influence on this group of future impressionists. The artist was already strongly attracted by feminine beauty.
Mobilised for the war of 1870, Renoir fell ill. Returning to painting, Renoir, until 1880, shared fully in the enthusiasm for the impressionist adventure. He often painted alongside Monet (at Chatou, Bougival, Argenteuil, etc.), each painter trying to capture the incessant movement of appearances. Renoir participated in group exhibitions (Salon de Paris, Salon de Refusés, Salon des Artistes français, Salon d’Automne, etc.). The works of Renoir are happy, distinguished by his preference for placing his characters in a context that was more concerned with Impressionism than landscape.
In 1873, Durand-Ruel began to buy his canvases; this money significantly improved the vicissitudes of the artist’s bohemian lifestyle. He rented a dilapidated space in Monparnasse in 1876. He painted, choosing his subjects among the popular scenes of Paris. At the beginning of the 1880’s, Renoir moved into new circles; he distanced himself from his friends from his difficult years, and began to doubt Impressionism. Henceforth, his work was shown regularly in solo exhibitions. At the age of 40, he became involved with Aline Charigot, his model, whom he married in 1890. Their life was happy, and they had three sons (Pierre, who would become an actor; Jean, the well-known cinema director; and Claude, known as “Coco”, a ceramist and decorator).
As of 1881, in order to clarify his aesthetic ideas, Renoir travelled to Algeria and Italy. He admitted to himself, in 1883, that he had arrived at the end of Impressionism. His so-called “Ingres period” began. Renoir developed a friendship with Mallarmé, joined Cezanne in Estaque many times, working by side-by-side, and travelled. If he gradually returned to the principles of Impressionism, it was, from this point forward, in a very personal way.
In 1894, he was named the executor of Caillebotte, who bequeathed a very large collection of Impressionist works to the State. Renoir travelled again, to Germany, then made his first trip to Cagnes-sur-Mer (1898). His deteriorating health (gout, rheumatism) slowly began to affect his eyesight. He decided to settle in Cagnes, seeking the dry, hot climate of the south of France. In 1907, he abandoned Paris and purchased the Domaine des Collettes, where he built a house. He tried sculpture, after Maillol.
In 1911, suffering from a crisis of paralysis, he finally gave up walking, able to move from now on only in a wheelchair. Unable to hold his brushes, Renoir had them bound to his wrists.
In 1913, Renoir was included in the Armory Show exhibition in New York. In 1919, he was officially invited to visit the Impressionists hall in the Louvre. A sensual lover of life, Renoir, throughout history, will remain the painter of radiant, full-blown womanhood, the tender portraitist of children, and one of the great masters of colour.
Suffering from pulmonary congestion, Pierre-Auguste Renoir died in Cagnes-sur-Mer on 3 December 1919.

Artists on display

The art and the artists display: proclamations, galleries, museums, personal or collective exhibitions. On walls or in shop windows, wise or rebels, posters warn, argue, show. Some were specially conceived by an artist for such or such event, other, colder, have only the letter.

Some were created in lithographic technic, most are simple offset reproductions. They are many those who like collecting these rectangles of paper, monochrome or in games of colours, in matt paper or brilliant, with many words or almost dumb.

We are happy also to be able to greet, by this pages, mythical galleries as those of Denise René, Louis Carré, Claude Bernard, Berheim Jeune, Maeght, Pierre Loeb and others.


Complete work(s)

Complete work(s)
All the complete works

Bibliographic track and more

To read about the artist :
  • « La vie et l’oeuvre de P.-Auguste Renoir », Ed Vollard, Paris, 1919
  • « Auguste Renoir », F. Daulte, Princesse, Paris, 1979
  • « Renoir », Cat., Grand Palais, Paris, 1985
  • « Renoir », F. Casellani, Gründ, Paris, 1996
  • « Renoir sa vie, son œuvre », Paul Joannides, Ed. Soline, 2000
  • « Auguste Renoir peintre du bonheur : 1841-1919 », Gilles Néret, Ed. Taschen, 2001
  • « Renoir au XXe siècle », cat. d'expo., Grand-Palais, Ed. RMN, Paris, 2009
  • « Renoir », Anne Distel, Ed. Citadelles & Mazenod, 2009
  • « Renoir », D. Marchesseau et autres, cat. d'expo., Ed. Fondation Pierre Gianadda, 2014
  • « Scènes de la vie impressionniste… », collectif, Ed. RMN, Paris, 2016
To read from the artist :
  • « P.-Auguste Renoir, mon père », Jean Renoir, Hachette, 1962
  • « Auguste Renoir : Ecrits et Entretiens », A. De Butler, Ed. Amateur, 2001
Website : artists/renoir

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Art movements

+ IMPRESSIONNISM / 1855-1890 / Claude Monet, Frédéric Bazille, Berthe Morisot, Gustave Caillebotte, etc.
+ ARMORY SHOW / 1913 / Constantin Brancusi, Charles Camoin, Marcel Duchamp, Edward Hopper, Joseph Stella, etc.
All art movements

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Beyond works currently in stock, it seemed to me useful to combine business with pleasure by letting you discover others works by artists in my gallery. These artworks, now sold or removed from our website, have been in our stock in the past.

These pages will undoubtedly make it possible for some of you to associate an image with its title or the other way round, for others it will be a good time to discover more on such and such artist. For the sake of confidentiality – the pieces being no longer available – we won't display neither their numbering or their price. For whatever reason, make sure to visit this amazing art database with to date 6441 online works just for your pleasure! Michelle Champetier

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