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Camille Pissarro
Railroad Bridge, Pontoise
ca. 1873
private collection
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by Phyllis Tuchman

For a long time, Camille Pissarro was best known for his paintings from the 1880s, in which peasant girls tend cows, pick apples, wash dishes and shop at a poultry market. Rendered in a pointillist style, this rural imagery doesn’t project the glamour, panache or sizzle of theater scenes by Edgar Degas, nudes by Auguste Renoir and sunsets by Claude Monet. Moreover, they seem to have a socialist agenda.