Georges Seurat  (French, 1859-1891) 

Georges Seurat (French, 1859–1891) was a painter and draughtsman associated with the Neo-Impressionist movement and best known for inventing the technique of painting called Pointillism. He studied at the École des Beaux-Arts under Henri Lehmann (French, 1814–1882), a disciple of Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (French, 1780–1867), and made extensive studies of the school’s collection of prints, drawings and antique statuary. In the early 1880s, Seurat read several texts about theories on color and optics that would inform his own technique, including Charles Blanc’s Grammaire des arts du dessin (1867) and Michel-Eugène Chevreul’s De la loi du contraste simultané des couleurs (1839). Seurat’s early work focuses on the suburbs of Paris, such as Bathers at Asnières (1883), a monumental painting that depicts workers relaxing by the Seine river.

Seurat’s most famous work, Bathers, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte (1884-1886) is the first instance of Divisionism, a technique that separated colors into individual dots or patches. From 1886, Seurat painted marine landscapes of the Normandy coast during the summers and in the winters worked on large figure paintings, which he considered his most important works. Seurat’s paintings of popular urban entertainment, including Circus Slideshow (1887-1888), Le Chahut (1889-1890) and The Circus (1890-1891), as well as his landscapes illustrate a focus on surface quality and a rhythmical ordering of line and space. He also produced drawings using conté crayon, both as independent works and preparatory studies, which often exaggerate dark tones against light backgrounds, or vice versa. Seurat’s technique was adopted by many Neo-Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painters, including Paul Signac (French, 1863–1935), Camille Pissarro (French, 1831–1903), and Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, 1853–1890). Today, Seurat’s work is held by several museum collections, including the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

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Georges Seurat, Petit Fort-Philippe


Georges Seurat
Petit Fort-Philippe

Galerie Schmit
Georges Seurat, Saltembanques


Georges Seurat
Richard Nathanson Impressionist & 20th Century Art
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Georges Seurat, Homme assis de profil à droite, jambe croisée (+ Deux figures, verso)


Georges Seurat
Homme assis de profil à droite, jambe croisée (+ Deux figures, verso), 1880-1881


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Georges Seurat, Le tombereau au cheval broutant


Georges Seurat
Le tombereau au cheval broutant, 1883
conté crayon on paper


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Georges Seurat, La mère de l'artiste, assise


Georges Seurat
La mère de l'artiste, assise, 1882
conté crayon on paper


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