The Impressionist Movement

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Impressionism was a movement that occurred in both art and poetry. It was a time in which the people broke from the traditional standards or styles. They wanted to bring new ways of expressing their ideas to their societies. These ideas were seen through subjects of interest, such as art and poetry. Claude Monet’s Woman with a Parasol: Madame Monet and Her Son and William Butler Yeats’s “The Wild Swans at Coole” both characterize important aspects of the Impressionist Age.

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The word “impressionism” is mostly associated with the artistic movement. The first time this term was used with reference to art was when one writer was speaking of a painting by Claude Monet, called Impression: Sunrise (1872, Musee Marmottan, Paris). The term was first officially used in 1877 (“Impressionism”). The artists of this movement were characterized as impressionists because of their simplified works (“Monet, Claude Oscar”). They were part of a group in which the artists shared similar styles and techniques between 1867 and 1886. Some of the important artists were Monet, Renoir, Pisarro, Sisley, Morisot, as well as a few others (Pioch). Monet and Renoir both painted scenes of La Grenouillere. Their work signified the beginning of this new age of art (Mataev). The Impressionist Movement grew because these painters wanted a different style, a new technique, and paintings with more unique subjects. The popular paintings of the time were all approved by the Academie des Beaux Arts. The standard type of paintings that were most commonly approved included a scale of tones for forming shapes and blacks and browns for making shadows. These classical paintings were realistic, usually of scenes indoors. Impressionists turned from this traditional art and began to paint their subjects outside, using unarranged light. These paintings were more spur-of-the-moment type, and appeared less realistically (“Impressionism”). There are certain characteristics that set impressionist art apart from all other styles of art.

Impressionists, both in art and poetry, portrayed great images of their subjects by using their styles or techniques. They often captured scenes with vivid color, with great light effects, and with motion (Sporre 525). The impressionist painters tried to view their subjects not as what they really were, but as different areas of color, shapes and light. They commonly used quick, free brush strokes of non-detailed spots of color. This method created a lively appearance (Sporre 527). Impressionists did not mix their colors, as the earlier artists had done.

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