Study: Torso, Sunlight Effect, c.1876
Oil on canvas, 31.5 x 25.2 inches [80 x 64 cm]
Musee d'Orsay, Paris
Claude Monet and Renoir were close friends and, during the 1860s, often worked together. They began painting the shimmering atmosphere of water and light at La Grenouillere, creating early examples of Impressionist painting. For both painters, light had become the significant unifying factor of figures and landscapes. While Monet devoted himself to landscapes, Renoir was more committed to the human figures. Renoir painted a joyous, brilliant version of the world. His early experience as a porcelain painter allowed him to understand the effect of bright color on a smooth white ground. Renoir was brilliant in his handling of texture and surface.