1880 - 1900. Postimpressionism is an umbrella term that encompasses a variety of artists who were influenced by Impressionism but took their art in other directions. There is no single well-defined style of Post-Impressionism, but in general it is less idyllic and more emotionally charged than Impressionist work. The classic Post-Impressionists are Paul Gauguin, Paul Cezanne, and Vincent van Gogh.

Artists and Articles

Paul Cezanne

Explore the expression and emotion of color with Paul Cezanne, the Post-Impressionist, who achieved perfection through a unique treatment of space, mass, and color. The French painter Paul Cezanne is one of the greatest of the Post-Impressionists, whose works and ideas were influential in the aesthetic development of many 20'th century artists and art movements, especially Cubism. It is the tension between actuality and illusion, description and abstraction, reality and invention, that makes Cezanne's most unassuming subjects so profoundly satisfying and exciting, and which provided a legacy for a revolution of form that led the way for modern art. By the time of his death in 1906, Cezanne's art had begun to be shown and seen across Europe, and it became a fundamental influence on the Fauves, the Cubists, and virtually all advanced art of the early 20th century.

Paul Gauguin

Paul Gauguin, one of the leading French painters of the Postimpressionism period, whose development of a conceptual method of representation was a decisive step for 20th-century art. Gauguin's paintings are powerful, while the subject matter is distinctive, the scale is large, and the compositions are simplified. Gauguin implied the qualities of expressive color, denial of perspective, and thick, flat forms. "The further I go, the more I feel sure that thoughts can be expressed by something quite different from literature," Gauguin wrote. Gauguin's artistic development of a conceptual method of representation was important for the history of art as it moved into the twentieth century. Painters no longer aimed at depicting the outer world but at rendering their inner dreams by symbolic allusion and decorative form. Line and color developed their powers of expression, taking inspiration in global art.

Vincent van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh, is generally considered to be the greatest Dutch painter after Rembrandt, and, with Cezanne and Gauguin, the greatest of Post-Impressionist artists. Vincent van Gogh created Postimpressionism and powerfully influenced the current of Expressionism in modern art, though he had little success during his lifetime. Van Gogh produced all of his 900+ paintings and 1100+ drawings during a period of only 10 years before he succumbed to mental illness, possibly bipolar disorder, and committed suicide. The striking, bold, intense colors, the emphatic brushwork, and contoured forms of his work are highly expressive, even emotional. Van Gogh used the symbolic and expressive values of colors for expressing emotions rather than, as did the Impressionists, for the reproduction of visual appearances, atmosphere, or light. The term Post-Impressionist does, however, acknowledge that Impressionism had shaped this artist.



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