Notes for "The First Impressionist Exhibition, 1874"
- To enter the exhibit from the photograph of Nadar's studio, click on one of the artists' names.
- In a gallery:
- Click on "Zoom" or the painting itself for a detailed look at the painting.
- Click on "Critics" for background information on this particular painting, including contemporary critics' comments, date/size/media/location, anecdotes and other historical documentation.
- Click on "Catalog" to see this painting listed in a facsimile of the original exposition catalog.
- Remember there may be more paintings off the screen to the right. SCROLL over as if you were to STROLL over in the actual gallery.
- Click on "Home" to exit the exhibition entirely and return to the Artchive Home Page
- Click on "Exit to Boulevard des Capucines" to return to the main page (with the photograph of Nadar's studio).
- Click on the artist's name under "To Next Gallery:" to enter the next portion of the exhibit.
- If you use a browser that supports the "Target" attribute, many of the links will open up new windows. When you are finished viewing the new window, close it. You will go back to the original browser window. Trust me, this speeds things up for you.
Historical Inaccuracies in the Recreation
- The images are to relative scale within each gallery. For example, in the Renoir gallery, you can tell that Danseuse is much larger than La loge in real life. However, this does not hold true across galleries. In other words, comparing the size of Renoir's Danseuse with Cezanne's Modern Olympia will not give a true sense of their relative sizes. If I had retained the relative sizes across the galleries, Boudin's Côtes-du-Nord (by far the largest image) would have caused all of the other images to be postage stamp-sized.
- The paintings were not necessarily hung as I show them here. As reported by Jules Castagnary, "Works are hung according to size: the small ones on the line, the others above; and all in alphabetical order, after a lottery for the beginning letter and with the stipulation that in no case will there be more than two rows of paintings."
- It is important to remember that there were over 200 works from thirty artists on display. My exhibit shows 20 works from eight artists. You should bear in mind that what we now recognize as the "Impressionists" first exhibited with this much larger number of artists. Yet even in 1874, their unique style made a distinct impression, for good or bad, on the critics of the day.
- According to Rewald, the exhibit location "was a series of large rooms on two floors with red-brown walls...". I experimented with replicating these "red-brown" walls and it looked really terrible. So I've stuck with "modern gallery-white". Trust me, if they looked like the walls for the Pre-Raphaelite show now on display in Houston, nothing has been lost (yech).
There is a nice concise background summary of the exhibit in the book "The Chronicle of Impressionism".
Due to the high-resolution graphics, it is inevitable that some people will experience substantial loading delays.
If this is unacceptable, I suggest browsing with image loading disabled until you reach a point where you want to see a
particular image. I have utilized "alt" text for the images to facilitate text-based browsing.
Maximizing Image Quality
The images used in this exhibit are 24-bit (16.7 million) color JPEGs. Your system may be set for 8-bit (256)
colors. There will be substantial loss of resolution if the exhibit is viewed in less than 24-bit color. I
encourage you to experiment with 24-bit color, even if only temporarily, when viewing the images.
"Pardon my English, but..."
I dislike American cultural imperialism as much as the next person and I know it is the "World Wide" Web.
Unfortunately, I am ashamed to admit that I am mono-lingual. If anyone wishes to provide translations of the
text into their native tongue, I will be glad to add another version in that language. It would be especially
appropriate to have a version in French, of course.