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The Impressionists

ASAG Journal

Impressionism, post-impressionism and neo-impressionism are all different art movements that emerged during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Although these movements share certain similarities, they also have distinct differences in their styles, techniques and artistic goals.


Impressionism was a French art movement that emerged in the 1870s and was characterized by its emphasis on capturing the fleeting effects of light and color in nature. Impressionist artists used loose brushstrokes, bright colors and a focus on the everyday world to create works that were both realistic and atmospheric. They aimed to capture the visual experience of a given moment rather than creating a perfectly accurate representation of reality.


Post-impressionism followed closely after impressionism in the late 19th century. Post-impressionist artists sought to build on the innovations of the impressionists while also moving beyond their limitations. They used brighter and more vibrant colors, more abstract forms and experimented with new techniques such as pointillism and cloisonnism. They also explored more subjective and psychological themes, creating works that were often dreamlike or hallucinatory.


Neo-impressionism was an offshoot of post-impressionism that emerged in the 1880s. Also known as divisionism or pointillism, neo-impressionism placed a greater emphasis on the scientific principles of color perception. Neo-impressionist artists believed that the eye blends colors together to create a sense of brightness and luminosity. They achieved these effects by applying small dots of pure color to the canvas, creating a shimmering and vibrant effect when viewed from a distance. In summary, impressionism focused on capturing the fleeting effects of light and color, post-impressionism built upon these innovations while exploring more subjective and psychological themes, while neo-impressionism placed a greater emphasis on the scientific principles of color perception and experimented with applying color in small dots to create a shimmering effect.

"The Ferry" (1911)
by Australian Impressionist painter
Emanuel Phillips Fox Australia

Randy H. Sooknanan

ASAG Journal

March 4, 2021

Emanuel Phillips Fox (1865 – 1915) was an Australian impressionist painter who studied at the National Gallery of Victoria Art School in Melbourne. Fox also travelled to Paris to study art further in 1886. He remained in Europe until 1892. He spent over a decade in Europe in the early 20th century before he returned to Melbourne to lead what is considered the second phase of the 'Heidelberg School', an impressionist art movement which had grown in the city during his absence.


The ferry (circa 1910-circa 1911)
E. Phillips Fox, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The Forest by Emily Carr

Denise K. McTighe

ASAG Journal

May 30, 2021

Emily Carr, (1871-1945) was a Canadian painter from Victoria, British Columbia who explored the natural world and Aboriginal cultures of her homeland. She was among the first painters in Canada to work in the Post Impressionist style. She worked in a wide variety of styles, from Post-Impressionism and Expressionism to painterly abstraction. Through her unique view and ambitious, bright pieces, Carr brought an effectual intensity to her subjects.

The Forest, British Columbia, oil on canvas 1832, represents the artist’s movement from the Modernist views of the original landscape,  towards a more, dream-like, mythological quality. Looking into the forest, the rivers, trees and hills melt together to almost form a unified living being that peers out from the canvas through the separateness. This abstraction combines the ethereal eye Carr had for nature, with her own expanding perception.


Forest, British Columbia (1931-1932)
Emily Carr, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Édouard Léon Cortès

Randy H. Sooknanan

ASAG Journal

December 20, 2020

Édouard Léon Cortès (1882–1969) was a French post-impressionist artist of French and Spanish ancestry. He is known as "Le Poète Parisien de la Peinture" or "The Parisian Poet of Painting" because of his diverse Paris cityscapes in a variety of weather and night settings. He captured atmospheric portrayals of the street scenes of Paris with his art. During the early part of his career the artist’s palette was quite dark with only small amounts of bright colour illuminating the canvas. As time went by Cortes gradually lightened his palette until at the very end of his career his colours became very bright, perhaps resulting in a loss of intimacy and atmosphere. The artist’s paintings of the1920s and 1930s are very sought after as they depict a Paris full of excitement, culture and vitality and colour. He painted famous views such as Porte St. Denis, the Opera House and the Madeleine with beautiful lighting effects. He incorporated charming details in these works such as horse-drawn carriages and the omnibus. Edouard Cortes became a member of the Society of French Artists from 1907. He was also a member of the Salon de la Societe National and he exhibited at the Salon des Independents.

The Thinker, 1903

 by Rodin

ASAG Journal

August 31, 2020

"The Thinker" (1903) is a bronze sculpture by the French artist Auguste Rodin (1840 -1917) in which we see a pensive nude male figure of heroic size sitting in isolation upon a rock with his chin resting on one hand as he is appears in deep thought and contemplation. Today it is an image synonymous with the study of philosophy however,  "The Thinker" was initially conceived as part of Rodin's design for a set of bronze doors for a museum in Paris where he intended to represent the early Italian Renaissance poet Dante Alighieri. Rodin wanted to depict Dante reflecting on The Divine Comedy, his epic poem about heaven, hell, and the fate of all humankind. The original work is located in the Rodin Museum, in Paris, France 🇫🇷


Rodin, Auguste: The Thinker
The Thinker, bronze sculpture by Auguste Rodin, cast in 1904; in the Rodin Museum, Paris.
© Shawn McCullars

"The Café Concert", 1878

by Manet

Randy H. Sooknanan

ASAG Journal

January 26, 2021

"The Café Concert", 1878 (oil on canvas oil on canvas, 47.30 mm x 58.10 mm)
by Édouard Manet 🇫🇷 (French modernist painter)
Style: Realism and Impressionism (Manet was a pivotal figure in the transition from Realism to Impressionism)
Location: Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland, USA 🇺🇸

Here we see the great Manet's painting of a scene set in the Cabaret de Reichshoffen Café on the Boulevard Rochechouart. This spot was popular for social gatherings of all sorts, where men and women on the fringes of society would freely intermingle with well-heeled gentlemen and elite upclass ladies.


At the Café, circa 1879
Édouard Manet, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

"The Coral Necklace", circa 1917

by Wilhelm Gallhof

ASAG Journal

March 10, 2023

Wilhelm Gallhof (1878 at Iserlohn - 1918) was a German artist who studied in Munich, Karlsruhe, and with Lovis Corinth in Berlin. He worked in Weimar and Paris and was represented in many national and international exhibitions. 

As a sculptor and graphic artist, he was equally successful and brilliant as a painter. The oil painting by the German sculptor, painter and printmaker Wilhelm Gallhof titled "Die Koralle Halskette" in German or "Le collier de corail" in French or "The Coral Necklace" in Enlgish features a young woman reclining on a sofa, holding her red coral beads necklace on her left hand and admiring her beauty looking at a hand-mirror held on her right hand. Also she wears a string of the same type of red coral beads on her right ankle.

Gallhof died in action in 1918 during WWl.


The Coral Necklace, circa 1917
Wilhelm Gallhof, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons


Édouard Léon Cortès

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