Meeting and painting together
Fontainebleau is a forest about 60km south-east of Paris. Monet, Renoir, Sisley and Bazille wanted to paint en-plein-air inspired by the Barbizon-painters. All four being pupils of Gleyre, they formed one of the circles of friends. Their painting in Fontainebleau is an important step for the impressionist art-movement. They went there many times during the years 1862-1871 (R30; R31), but it is not always clear who went when, see.
(For the general references (=R) see ; for references to internet pages (=iR) see; for the subscription of the pictures see. Most of the pictures come from the-athenaeum.org (=iR2). My most important sources are the works of Dony (R30) and Raeburn (R31) about Renoir and of Wildenstein (R22) about Monet.)
Hôtel and Inn:
In April 1863 Renoir, Monet, Bazille and Sisley stayed at Auberge du Cheval-Blanc in Chailly-en-Bière (R30,p9; R22, p49). They also stayed in Hôtel du Lion in Chailly-en-Bière (west of Fontainebleau), where Monet one time was wounded. Maybe in Spring 1865, with Pissarro, but without Bazille (R30,p9). They often stayed at ‘Cabaret de la Mère Anthony’ in Marlotte (R3) south of Fontainebleau, the Inn which Renoir painted in 1866, with Jules le Coeur standing and Sisley with the hat on (R31,no4). In Februar 1866 Sisley, Renoir and Jules le Coeur painted in the surroundings of Marlotte (where le Coeur had bought a house in 1865), Milly and Courances (R166,p91). By then Monet and Bazille were working in Chailly-en-Bière (R166,p91). In 1865 Renoir lives there with his brother Edmond and met Courbet (R30,p9). From February till April Renoir stays frequently with Sisley and Le Coeur in Marlotte (R31,p295). In the summer of 1866 Renoir alternately stays with Jules le Coeur and in ‘Mère Anthony’ (R30,p9)
Portraits in Fontainebleau:
In 1865 Monet worked on his large painting ‘Le Déjeuner sur l’herbe’ in Chailly, west of Fontainebleau (R22,p58). In July 1867 Renoir portrayed Lise Tréhot also in Chailly-en-Bière (R30,no22).
Paths in the forest:
Clearings in the forest:
Trees in the forest:
Barbizon painters in Fontainebleau:
Fontainebleau already was famous because of the Barbizon-school. Since the 1820s they often painted here. Rousseau even moved to Barbizon (west of Fontainebleau) in 1836, Millet followed in 1849 and had Charles Jacque as neighbour (R59,p144+154). They still painted there in the years the Impressionists painted there. Anyway there had been encounters with Daubigny, Diaz and Corot (R32,p10). Renoir even destroyed his ‘Esmeralda’ exhibited at the Salon of 1864 because Diaz criticised his use of bitumen (R32,p11).