Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Gustave Caillebotte - Paris Street, Rainy Day (1877)

Caillebotte's style belongs to the School of Realism but was strongly influenced by his Impressionist associates. In common with his precursors, Jean-Francois Millet and Gustave Courbet, as well his contemporary Degas, Caillebotte aimed to paint reality as it existed and as he saw it, hoping to reduce painting's inherent theatricality. Perhaps because of his close relationship with so many of his peers, his style and technique varies considerably among his works, as if “borrowing” and experimenting, but not really sticking to any one style. At times, he seems very much in the Degas camp of rich-colored realism (especially his interior scenes) and at other times, he shares the Impressionists' commitment to "optical truth" and employs an impressionistic pastel-softness and loose brush strokes most similar to Renoir and Pissarro, though with a less vibrant palette.


Paris Street, Rainy Day

With an almost photograhic feel, it seems to me that the main focus is of the main in the centre with his head down approaching the curb. This is achieved without putting the main figures completely out of focus but just enough to allow the eye to drift over them.

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