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Painter - Pierre-Auguste Renoir
An 1876 self-portrait by Renoir, created when he was 35 years old.

Painter - Pierre-Auguste Renoir

A leader in the development of Impressionism, Pierre-Auguste Renoir was born in Limoges, France on the 25th of February 1841. As a boy he painted decorations on fine china or on fans before he went to Paris to study art under Swiss artist, Charles Gleyre.

His work was first exhibited in 1864, although he did not enjoy much success until ten years later when six of his paintings were displayed in the first Impressionist exhibition. He spent some time travelling Europe where he was influenced by the works of Titian and Raphael. He also met the composer Richard Wagner, whose portrait he is said to have painted in a little over half an hour!

In 1890 Renoir married his model Aline Victorine Charigot, with whom he already had a child. Then in 1892 the artist developed rheumatoid arthritis which would stay with him for the rest of his life.

In 1907, Renoir moved to Cagnes-sur-Mer where he had a stately home built. He continued to work despite his arthritis disfiguring his hands. He had a stroke in 1912, which confined him to a wheelchair. Not to be daunted, Renoir then experimented with sculpture.

Aline died in 1915 and Renoir followed her on December the 3rd 1919, at the age of 78.

For a closer look at the pictures, please click on them to enlarge.
1.
Currently on display at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff, La Parisienne was painted by Renoir in 1874. The model for this piece, Henriette Henriot, later achieved moderate fame in which profession?
As an actress
As a tennis player
As a singer
As an acrobat
Henriot was said to have been Renoir’s favourite model during the 1870s, and he painted her several times.
La Parisienne (also known as The Blue Lady) received mixed reviews when it was first exhibited - although it did sell for 1,500 Francs
2.
Commissioned in 1882 by art dealer Paul Durand-Ruel, what is the title of this painting by Renoir?
Dance in the Park
Dance in the Country
Dance in the Garden
Dance in the City
In the same year Renoir also painted Dance in the City as a partner to this piece. The man in the painting is Renoir's friend Paul Lhote, and the woman is Aline Charigot, who was to become Renoir's wife
3.
The Umbrellas is owned by the National Gallery in London, but its possession is alternated with the Gallery of which city?
Cardiff
Edinburgh
Belfast
Dublin
The painting had belonged to Sir Hugh Lane, who died in 1915 bequeathing it to the Tate Gallery in London. An unsigned amendment to his will however, suggested that Lane wanted the painting to be displayed in Dublin. It was moved to the National Gallery in 1935, but in 1959 an agreement was made to alternate its display between London and Dublin.
4.
Luncheon of the Boating Party was painted by Renoir in 1881 and shows his friends (including his future wife) relaxing on a balcony beside the River Seine. What happened to the painting in 1954 which has since become a source of controversy?
The painting was stolen
The painting was torn
The painting was cleaned
The painting was burned
In the following quote the restorer responsible remembers a dinner party he attended shortly after the painting had been cleaned:
"One of the other guests inquired whether the gentleman had viewed The Phillips Collection's Renoir Boating Party since it had been cleaned (by us, as most of those around the table knew). 'It is ruined,' he said, 'ruined... the harmony of the whole has been destroyed, the glazes have all been stripped away... I stood in front of it and I wept.' "
5.
Finished in 1892, Girls at the Piano was commissioned by the Musée du Luxembourg in Paris. How many other versions of this painting did Renoir create?
3 more versions
6 more versions
9 more versions
12 more versions
Renoir painted 3 variations in oil. These he called repetitions which he created in order to to fulfil commissions
6.
Occasionally named In the Summer, by what title is this 1868 painting more commonly known?
The Brunette
The Peasant Girl
The Bohemian
Girl in the Garden
In this piece the realistic figure of the girl is in contrast to the rough impression of foliage in the background. The model for this, and more than a dozen other paintings by Renoir, was Lise Trehot, his lover at the time
7.
Paysage bord du Seine or Landscape on the Banks of the Seine was painted in 1879. It is currently in the collection of the Baltimore Museum of Art in the USA, from whom it was stolen in 1951. How many years later was the painting returned to them?
32 years later
42 years later
52 years later
62 years later
The painting was taken sometime between the evening of November the 16th and noon on November the 17th 1951. In July 2012 it was presented for sale at an auction house in Virginia and the FBI seized it. It was returned to the museum on January 31st 2014
8.
Completed during the year of Renoir's death, what is the title of this piece which shows two nudes in the foreground and three in the background?
The Nudes
The Bathers
The Picnic
The Swimmers
Renoir painted several pictures of bathers in the latter part of his career. In this one all signs of the modern world are removed and the women, free from inhibitions, merge with nature
9.
Painted by Renoir in 1876, Bal du moulin de la Galette is considered one of the great masterpieces of Impressionism. In 1990 it became the second most expensive piece of art when it sold at auction for how much?
$88,100,000 (£51,424,000)
$78,100,000 (£45,587,000)
$68,100,000 (£39,750,000)
$58,100,000 (£33,913,000)
The same buyer at the auction also bought van Gogh's Portrait du Dr Gachet for $82,500,000 (£48,155,000) making it the most expensive painting at the time. Today the most expensive painting is Garcon a la pipe by Picasso which sold in 2004 for $104,168,000 (£60,802,653)
10.
Officially entitled Alice and Elisabeth Cahen d’Anvers, what is this painting more commonly known as?
Pink and Blue
Two Sisters
Girls in Lace
Young Girls
The girls were the daughters of the wealthy banker and politician, Louis Raphael Cahen d'Anvers. Renoir also painted Alice and Elisabeth's younger sister, Irene, but it is said that her father did not like the painting and had it hung in his servants' quarters!

 

Author:  Graeme Haw

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