Saturday, April 20, 2013

Impressionist bridges

Impressionist bridges: Gustave Caillebotte, Eugene Boudin, Alfred Sisley, Camille Pissarro, Claude Monet, Childe Hassam, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, John Singer Sargent, Edward Redfield, Colin Campbell Cooper, Willard Metcalf, Joaquin Sorolla, John Twatchman, Frits Thaulow, Guy Rose
No — it’s not the subject of a real-world exhibit somewhere, though that might be nice — just a thought that occurred to me while looking through some images of Impressionist paintings.

One of the things that set the Impressionists apart was their insistence, like Courbet, on painting the real world as they saw it, unromanticized and unfiltered through Academic standards for “proper” subjects for paintings.

Though bridge building had become quite refined before then, it kicked into high gear in the mid 1800′s with the new riveted wrought iron methods of construction, and the Impressionists, often drawn to the water’s edge, captured many of the new bridges along with the old.

You could probably fill a good sized book with paintings of bridges by Monet, Pissarro and Sisley alone.

I’ve broadly expanded the definition of “Impressionist” here to include many artists who were merely influenced by them or who fit the theme stylistically.

Most, though not all, of these images can be found on WikiPaintings.org.

(Images above: Gustave Caillebotte, Eugene Boudin, Alfred Sisley, Camille Pissarro, Claude Monet, Childe Hassam, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, John Singer Sargent, Edward Redfield, Colin Campbell Cooper, Willard Metcalf, Joaquin Sorolla, John Twatchman, Frits Thaulow, Guy Rose)

5 thoughts on “Impressionist bridges

  1. David J. Teter

    A worthy and endless theme, and nicely varied. Bridges can be a metaphor for so many things. I love bridges.
    I really like the Colin Campbell Cooper, one of his I have not seen.

    It would make for a great show.

  2. kelly

    a beautiful collection! I was able to to see the London Bridge a few years back, simply amazing. Bridges are so diverse, no two are the same. The colors in the last painting are phenomenal!

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