Impressionism according to Duret

 

 

Impressionism: a historical reconstruction

Impressionism

according to Duret

Introduction:
Théodore Duret was important for his publications on Impressionism, first (1878) limiting the impressionists to 5 artists and later (1906) adding 2 more. Duret supported the ‘impressionists’ by purchases and lending 6 paintings to the ‘impressionist’ expositions in 1877 +1879, but he didn’t approve these expositions and didn’t review them as an art-critic. Duret called the 7th ‘impressionist’ exhibition in 1882 the best. As an art-critic in his review of the Salon of 1870 he already spoke of ‘impressionists’.

Les Peintres Impressionnistes (1878/05):
In 1878 Théodore Duret published a history about the lives and works of impressionist painters: ‘Les peintres impressionnistes; Claude Monet, Sisley, C. Pissarro, Renoir, Berthe Morisot‘. So at first he limited the Impressionist painters to these 5 artists, whom I call the Key-Impressionists. In a later revised edition ‘Histoire des peintres impressionnistes: Pissarro, Claude Monet, Sisley, Renoir, Berthe Morisot, Cézanne, Guillaumin’ published in 1906 he added Cézanne and Guillaumin as Impressionists.
Note 1: I think it right that he included Guillaumin. This makes it extra strange he is so much neglected.
Note 2: I think it strange he added Paul Cézanne, who just joined 2 of the 8 ‘impressionist’ expositions, who just shortly used an (unmature) impressionist painting style and who was mainly a Post-Impressionist.
Duret restricted Impressionism to those artists that were devoted to landscape, colour and open air (painting). Stating that Cals, Degas and Rouart were no Impressionists. Being involved since the beginning in 1874 also was a criteria, thus excluding Caillebotte. He stressed landscape painting as the preferred and representative form of pure Impressionism.
Sources: R142; R261; R7; R5,p109; R2,p379.
Note: additional info will follow.

 

Duret as an art-collector:
Théodore Duret also was an art-collector. In 1872 he started to buy impressionist paintings and gave them financial support. In January 1873 he bought two works of Renoir↑↑ for 400+1200 franc (R5,p78).
Duret also did loan some of his works to the ‘impressionist’ expositions. In 1877 three works at the 3rd ‘impressionist’ exposition were loans by Duret; two of Monet (no.94 +110) and one of Sisley (no.219)↑. In 1879 three works of Monet (no. 139-141)↓ at the 4th ‘impressionist’ exposition were loans by Duret.
Duret also collected Post-Impressionists. In 1894 Duret had financial problems. 1894/03/19 part of his collection was auctioned at Georges Petit. 1900 onwards Duret gave his collection to French museums.
Catalogue: 1894/03/19, Catalogue des tableaux et pastels composant la collection de Théodore Duret at the Gallerie Georges Petit, Paris. (online PDF version at archive.org).

 

Duret, a short biography:
Théodore Duret (1838-1927) was a journalist, art-critic, owner of a cognac company and art-collector. In 1865 he met Manet in Madrid. He took part at meetings with the ‘impressionists’ in Café Guerbois and Nouvelles Athènes. In 1868 he started with Zola the Republican news paper. In his review of the Salon of 1870 he already spoke of ‘impressionists’. Spring 1871 he was loco-mayor of the Paris Commune. In 1872 he started to buy impressionist paintings and gave them financial support. He published books on Impressionism, but he didn’t review the ‘impressionist’ expositions. In 1874 he was opposed to an independent exposition and tried to convince Pissarro in a letter (1874/02/15) to exhibit at the Salon (R88II,p231/2;R1,p310). Duret called the 7th ‘impressionist’ exhibition in 1882 the best (R2,p373), because most paintings were devoted to landscape, colour and the open air in line with his 1878 publication (R2,p378/9; see above).

Duret also wrote prefaces to catalogues:
April 1883: for the catalogue of the Renoir solo exhibition at Durand-Ruel.
April 1886: for the catalogue “Works in Oil and Pastel by the Impressionists of Paris“ of an exhibition in New York with loans of Durand-Ruel.

 

Publications:

Duret, Théodore: Les peintres Impressionnistes; Claude Monet, Sisley, C. Pissarro, Renoir, Berthe Morisot; Avec un dessin de Renoir. Paris, Mai 1878 (R5,p109; see document on gallica.bnf.fr = iR40 and on archive.org//ACL3573=iR19). (R142)
Compare the later edition of 1922 = R261 and the German translation of 1923 = R7.

Duret, Théodore: Critique de l’avant garde. Paris, 1885, Februar. See PDF version on archive.org. (R145)
(A collection of reviews and articles on art. R5,p142/5)

Duret, Théodore: Histoire de Édouard Manet et de son oeuvre. Paris, 1906. (online version: iR19//AEU-0635) (R260)

Duret, Théodore: Histoire des peintres impressionnistes: Pissarro, Claude Monet, Sisley, Renoir, Berthe Morisot, Cézanne, Guillaumin. Paris, 1906 / 1919 / 1922. (online version: iR40/bpt6k856763viR40/bpt6k109479q; iR19//AFL-4121) (R261)
German translation:
Duret, Théodore: Die Impressionisten; Pissarro, Claude Monet, Sisley, Renoir, Berthe Morisot, Cézanne, Guillaumin. 5e auflage, Berlin, 1923. (R7)

Duret, Théodore: Manet and the French Impressionists; Pissarro, Claude Monet, Sisley, Renoir, Berthe Morisot, Cézanne, Guillaumin. Paris, 1910 (online version: iR19//AIW-5926) (R262)

 

Sources:
Additional sources are: R3,p660+206;R142;R5,p78+109+194;R31;R2,p106+373+378+390;R7;R90I,p478;R90II,p288.

 

Recommended citation: Impressionism according to Duret. Last modified 2024/02/05.  https://www.impressionism.nl/impressionism-according-to-duret/

Note: additional info will follow.

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