Virtually explore the Musée d'Orsay with Smarthistory as your guide
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The subject takes control over the outdoor setting, expressing her independence in spite of limitations.
In the suburbs, Parisians escaped the pressures of modern life. Monet painted their sun-drenched pleasures.
Renoir wanted to forget everything he knew about how to paint so that he could render light as it really is.
They wanted an epic Biblical image, or one from a Greek myth. He gave them a painting of a modern-day funeral.
Lacking access to the cafes and bars male Impressionists painted, Morisot mastered intimate domestic interiors.
Hazy with smoke, the architecture of the train station and technology of the iron engine dissolve before our eyes.
The male body at work is gorgeously glorified in Caillebotte’s canvas, raising questions of class and sexuality.
Manet decided to replace the idealized female nude with the image of a known prostitute. It didn’t go so well.
Like other academic artists, Couture draws a subject from ancient Rome, but chooses decadence, not heroism.
This sentimental scene of a quiet moment of prayer in the fields reflects a nostalgia for religion in modern France.
Like a snapshot, Renoir’s flirtatious, social scene seems to represent a caught moment in time.
Rosa Bonheur defies the patriarchy, one masterfully painted ox at a time.