Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s renowned and evocative Luncheon of the Boating Party (1880–1881) portrays a convivial gathering of friends and acquaintances. The subjects of the painting were people Renoir knew; fellow artists, journalists, critics, collectors, models, and actors. For the first time, this volume examines in detail Renoir’s subjects and working methods through the deconstruction of this painting, now one of the jewels of The Phillips Collection, in Washington D.C.
Renoir and Friends explores Renoir’s masterpiece, analysing elements of the painting itself, photographs, and contextual works by Renoir and fellow artists including Gustave Caillebotte, Edgar Degas, Léon Bonnat, and Édouard Manet. Essays by leading scholars draw out information about the subjects, including collector Charles Ephrussi and Renoir’s future wife Aline Charigot. They discuss what the inclusion of these characters in the painting tells us about Renoir’s working practice and look at how the artist created a painting with universal appeal whilst remaining convincingly specific. This beautifully illustrated volume contains over 100 colour images of works by Renoir and his contemporaries, as well as a bibliography and an index.
Eliza E. Rathbone is chief curator emerita at The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.
Mary Morton is curator and head of the French paintings department at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.
Sylvie Patry is deputy director for collections & exhibitions and Gund Family Chief Curator, Barnes Foundation
Aileen Ribeiro is professor emeritus in the History of Art at the University of London
Elizabeth Steele is head of conservation at The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.
Sara Tas is a curator at the Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam