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(Born Limoges, 25 February 1841; died Cagnes-sur-Mer, 3 December 1919). French Impressionist painter. He was born into a poor family and in 1854, aged 13, he began employment as a painter in a porcelain factory in Paris, gaining experience with the light, fresh colours that were to distinguish his Impressionist work and also learning the importance of good craftsmanship. His predilection for light-hearted themes was also influenced by the great Rococo masters, whose work he studied in the Louvre. In 1862, having saved enough to pay for professional tuition, he became a pupil in Gleyre's studio; there he formed lasting friendships with Monet, Sisley, and Bazille, and with them created the early nucleus of the Impressionist group. His relationship with Monet was particularly close at this time, and their paintings of the beauty spot called La Grenouillère done in 1869 (an example by Renoir is in the Nationalmuseum, Stockholm) are regarded as the classic early statements of the Impressionist style.

Text source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)

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