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Introduction to the Exhibition: Frédéric Bazille and the Birth of Impressionism

Kimberly A. Jones, curator of 19th-century French paintings, National Gallery of Art. Frédéric Bazille (1841–1870) was a central figure in the history of early impressionism who worked closely with the renowned artists Claude Monet (1840–1926) and Auguste Renoir (1840-1917). Killed in the Franco-Prussian War just prior to his 29th birthday, Bazille all but vanished from history before his talent could be fully recognized. To celebrate the opening of Frédéric Bazille and the Birth of Impressionism on April 9, 2017, at the National Gallery of Art, Kimberly A. Jones provides an overview of the exhibition, the first devoted to the artist in the United States in a quarter century. On view through July 9, 2017, the exhibition examines Bazille’s place within the vibrant avant-garde art scene of Paris in the 1860s and the role he played in the birth of the impressionist movement.