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Pierre-Auguste Renoir • Painting, 1874, 142.5×94.5 cm
About the artwork
Art form: Painting
Subject and objects: Portrait, Genre scene
Style of art: Impressionism
Technique: Oil
Materials: Canvas
Date of creation: 1874
Size: 142.5×94.5 cm
Artwork in selections: 19 selections

Description of the artwork «Dancer»

Teaching Renoir to the art of painting coincided with the emergence in France of a new movement of impressionism. Bored with all the academic left no room for the expression of emotions, demanding from artists of compliance with the established canons. The first attempts of the Impressionists to present the public with works written in a new manner, at first, was a failure. Critics were generous sarcastic article, visitors of the exhibitions contemptuously turned away from the exhibits.

However, for Renoir, as for his brothers of the brush, this reaction was only incentive. Painters searched for new methods that would help them to capture on canvas the vivid colorful world in all its diversity and those fleeting impressions that come with it. By 1874, the time of the creation of paintings by Auguste Renoir "Dancer"the description of which we offer below in the Arsenal of the future Impressionists were such techniques as rejection of the clear path and create outlines of an object using many small strokes and contrast; the use of pastel shades, creating a sense of transparency; blurred background enhancing the impression of motion; the use of repelling light colors that are created "outside" the illumination of paintings, etc.

In 1872, Renoir, enchanted opened before him artistic perspectives, gathered around him like-minded people who were members of the "Anonymous cooperative society". They have joined together to support each other and other independent artists who have chosen a new path. At the first exhibition of the community, held in Paris in mid-April, 1874, among other works, was presented with the "Dancer" — painting by Auguste Renoir. The exhibition proved to be a failure: critics have not stinted on the ridicule, which was nicknamed "the Impressionists".

Paris, April 25, 1874. Regular readers of the newspaper Le Charivari buy morning edition, hoping to have some fun — the editorial Board preferred to submit any information in a humorous way. Their expectations met: popular Parisian journalist Louis Leroy wrote a fun article about his visit to art exhibition. The text was built as a replica of the two characters who came to the exhibition, wanting to enjoy the works of art, but in the end left her frustrated and angry. The first blow hapless visitors struck the painting Auguste Renoir "the Dancer". Here he writes about this work by Roy:

" What a pity that the artist, obviously having a sense of color, has not learned to draw well! — he told me. — The legs of his dancers look as lifeless as their gas skirts!
Perhaps you to him too cruel, not I agreed. In my opinion, this artist and very clear picture!
Pupil of Bertin decided that I was being sarcastic, and instead just shrugged."

What is on the canvas, which made such a strong impression on his contemporaries of the painter? The Central part of paintings by Auguste Renoir "the Dancer" is a figure of a young girl dressed in a ballerina costume. A young dancer stands sideways to the viewer, her legs are put in 4-th position, left shoulder back — natural posture suggests that she loves and knows perfectly the art of dance. We see the dancer is not in the scenic way — she appears to us in the role of herself. There is no doubt that the dance in her performance as beautiful.

To convey the weightlessness and transparency of the fabric tutu, Renoir uses for her picture many light strokes create a soft contour. The Pointe Shoe is made of dense pink satin, by contrast, carefully drawn — it seems that one has only to touch them and you can feel under your fingers the chill of the fabric. White skin girls are interspersed with laconic decorations in black on the arm and neck. Background, favorably contrasting with the graceful blond figure, is feathered shading, full of velvet shadows.

Today the picture is Auguste Renoir's "the Dancer" is part of world treasures of art and exhibited at the National gallery of art (Washington, USA).