Bathers at Asnires

Bathers at Asnires
Artist Georges Seurat
Year 1884
Medium Oil on canvas
Location National Gallery, London
Dimensions 79 in × 118 in
201 cm × 300 cm

Bathers at Asnieres is one of the large-scale compositions by Georges Seurat. This was Seurat’s first painting exhibited at newly created Society of Independent Artists. Georges Seurat was a French painter who devoted his life to the understanding of painting methods based on scientific theories. He was born to a wealthy Parisian family in 1859. From 1878-1879 Seurat studied art at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. Georges Seurat died at a young age of 32, but during his short life he was able to create a revolution in the history of art. Bathers at Asnieres was the artist’s first major work that is regarded as the marker of that revolution. Seurat pioneered a new way of painting and a new style of art.

Painting Techniques used in the Artwork

Georges Seurat developed a new technique in art, Pointillism, in which dots of contrasting colors are used to create a vibrant, luminous effect. Georges was fascinated by contrast of colors and the way by which human brain and eye processes these colors. That is why he used tiny dots of colors instead of continuous streaks of paint. He called this technique Divisionism.

Known as one of the Pointillist masters, Georges Seurat was one of the members of Salon des Refuses ,who adopted contemporary art in his artworks. He was influenced by Chevreul, the Chemist concerning color contrasts and James Maxwell, the physicist on the nature of light. He also experienced with different lines and used them to express different types of emotions.

Georges Seurat was the member of Salon des Refuses. He learned about classical as well as contemporary form of art. He was the founder of Pointillism.

About the Painting

This artwork portrays a group of young boys taking rest and leisure by the Siene River. Asnières is an industrial suburb located on the River Siene in Paris. This painting was rejected by the official Salon but exhibited by the Societe des Artistes Independants.

Although the original painting was not painted using the technique of Pointillism, the artist later used dots of contrasting color in the picture. For example, he used dots of orange and blue colors in the hat that one boy is wearing in the picture.

The painting portrays a hot summer day where a bunch of boys are relaxing. On the left hand side of the picture, you will notice a grassy bank where several figures are sitting or reclining. The picture also consists of a dog that is looking round at something in the river. The painting depicts various forms of nature or landscape, including trees, boats, water and even buildings and factories. In the painting, he uses contrasts of colors to portray people taking rests on the bank of the river. The effect of radiation is also observed in the picture. The art form is a common impressionist scene that reflects the influence of ancient Egyptian art.

The painting is a perfect combination of light, atmosphere, contrast, composition and simplicity of form.

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