Artists by Movement:
Centered in France, 1860's to 1880's
Impressionism is a light, spontaneous manner of painting which began in France as a reaction against the restrictions and conventions of the dominant Academic art. Its naturalistic and down-to-earth treatment of its subject matter, most commonly landscapes, has its roots in the French Realism of Camille Corot and others.
The movement's name was derived from Monet's early work, Impression: Sunrise, which was singled out for criticism by Louis Leroy upon its exhibition.
The hallmark of the style is the attempt to capture the subjective impression of light in a scene.
The core of the earliest Impressionist group was made up of Claude Monet, Alfred Sisley and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. Others associated with this period were Camille Pissarro, Frederic Bazille, Edgar Degas, Gustave Caillebotte, Edouard Manet, and the American Mary Cassatt.
The Impressionist style was probably the single most successful and identifiable "movement" ever, and is still widely practiced today. But as an intellectual school it faded towards the end of the 19th century, branching out into a variety of successive movements which are generally grouped under the term Post-Impressionism.