Impressionism and Open-Air Painting

Waterfalls, Lakes, Streams and Rivers

To add variety and freshness to the composition, even the earliest of landscape paintings featured water. Cascades and waterfalls appear in studies of locations near Rome such as Tivoli and Terni, famous for their cascades, and the region of the “Castelli Romani” with lakes Nemi and Albano, depicted in a synthetic manner by the Neo-classical landscape painters. In England, oil studies of rivers reached their high point in the early work of Turner and Constable. Water is also notably present in the paintings of Courbet — who gave it a particularly material feel — and of Daubigny who introduced it into the subject matter of the Barbizon School and had a studio-boat built, from which to paint views of the Seine and the Oise. Among the Impressionists it was Monet who paid most attention to the changing effects of water.

The Waterfall of the Marmore

Camille Corot The Waterfall of the Marmore, Terni. c.1826

Oil on canvas. 36 x 32 cm.
BNL BNP Paribas Group Collection, Rome. Italy

The Châteu of Chillon

Gustave Courbet The Châteu of Chillon, 1874

Oil on canvas. 86 x 100 cm.
Musée Gustave Courbet, Ornans. France.

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