Nedelja, 12 Septembar 2021 11:04

Émile Zola and Impressionists Istaknut

Portrait of Émile Zola by Édouard Manet Portrait of Émile Zola by Édouard Manet

Famous French writer Émile Zola was a close friend of many young Impressionists artists during the early stages of his career. He spent much time with them in the cafes and bars of Paris, visited them in their studios, watched them in work, and, when needed, posed for them. Also further organized evening gatherings at his large country home from 1866 onwards. By 1868, as the critic and novelist, Émile Zola wrote in defense of the young Impressionists. In appreciation for Zola's support, Édouard Manet devoted a portrait to the writer in 1868, one of his most beautiful ever painted.

The foundation relationships with Impressionists began at a young age. When he was a student in Aix, Émile Zola was classmates with Paul Cézanne. This relationship continued in Paris, where Cézanne introduced Zola to Impressionists.

Émile Zola regarded the Impressionists as pioneers of a new genre of painting that had succeeded to liberate itself from the restraints of the studio and academicism. He vividly described the origin and characteristics of Impressionism: "We need the sun, free air, a bright and young painting. Let the sun come in and paint things as they look in the full light of day." In the 1860s, he wrote articles on the work of the early Impressionists, including Claude Monet, Edgar Degas, Frédéric Bazille and Pierre-Auguste Renoir.

In the 1886 novel His Masterpiece, Émile Zola narrated the struggle of the Impressionist movement in allegorical form. The novel is based on his own life, and that of his Impressionist painter friends and is told in a style that transposes the visual logic of Impressionism into the world of subjective perception, thought, and feeling. It tells the story of Claude Lantier, an ambitious and talented young artist who has come from the provinces to conquer Paris. He struggling for recognition and acceptance of a bold new style but falls foul of poverty and disinterest.

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