July 28 – October 8, 2017
Impressionist painting captures fleeting, spontaneous moments—the impressions, glances, and gestures of everyday life. Artists use loose brushstrokes and brightly colored paints that are meant to be blended by the viewer’s eye, and they are more interested in the interplay of these colors with light than the precise contours of the people or other subjects in the frame.
The art movement that we know as Impressionism was actually named by a Parisian art critic who first used the term as an insult to indicate that the piece described, Claude Monet’s Impression—Sunrise (1874), looked unrefined and incomplete. While Impressionism was a French invention first made prominent by artists including Monet, Camille Pissarro, and Alfred Sisley, American artists studying in Europe quickly became interested in the works of these French artists and adopted similar characteristics of the French Impressionist style, but with a distinct American bent.