Luncheon of the Boating Party

Luncheon of the Boating Party (Le dejeuner des canotiers) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir Year: 1880-1881  unnamed-1 This painting is one of my favorites. There is so much going on here with regards to the people and the setting. Who each person is engaged with, who is paying attention to whom and why the huge disparity in dress? There are men in top hats and men in sleeveless shirts. The man under dressed must certainly be an artist.  Hint - he is one of Renoir's best friends. Nevertheless, looking at the painting you can’t help but feel like they are having the best time. And why not… the people in this painting all know each other and they are all friends of Renoir. He assembled them and then positioned each one for an exact look. I like this painting for the feeling it provides. Oh sure the composition, brush strokes, color use and lighting are all incredible, but this piece just makes me smile. Two tidbits of information:  First, Edward G. Robinson, the famous movie actor loved this painting. It was reported he told a friend, “I go see this painting every time I get a chance. And all I can think about is… how can I steal this and get away with it?”  I know exactly how he feels. The second interesting note about this work is Pierre Renoir’s future wife in this painting. But then truth be told, what artist worth his salt hasn’t painted his future wife? Like I said there is so much to see, feel, and experience in this piece. I will only say… “Enjoy!” Wayne

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