Pierre Auguste Renoir was born in Limoges in February 1841. In 1845, Renoir and his family left Limoges and moved to Paris. He continued his education in Paris until the age of 13, at which time he went to work for Levy Brothers where he painted flowers on porcelain objects. In 1862 Renoir entered the Beaux-Arts and began going to Claude Gleyre’s studio, where he met other famous artists such as Claude Monet, Jean Frederic Bazille, and Alfred Sisely. His early paintings were often underestimated. However, the first work he exhibited at an art show was a great success, but after the show, he destroyed it. He is most famous for painting both landscapes and womens bodies, mostly nudes.
The years from 1964 to 1883 saw Renoir in his Impressionist period. In this time, he painted mostly landscapes although many had a focus on youth. His most famous painting from this period is The Luncheon of the Boating Party. From 1883 to 1890, Pierre Auguste Renoir entered what is known as his Dry Period in which he moves further away from Impressionism. During this period, he began to doubt his work and sought to change his brushstrokes. His lines and shapes became more precise and he began to use much cooler colors. His most famous painting from this period is The Large Bathers. From 1890 to 1900, Renoir’s style changed again. This period, known as the Pearly Period was a mixture of his earlier impressionist style along with the more defined structure of his Dry period. His fist painting of this period, the Girls at the Piano, was purchased by the French state. By this time, the public interest in his works had become incredibly intense and his paintings were much sought after.
The final period of Renoir’s life saw him struck with terrible attacks of rheumatism, and in January 1912, he was paralyzed in both his arms and legs. He had surgery to fix this and continued to paint until the end of his life, although his brush had to be tied to his hand. He finally succumbed to his illnesses and died on December 3, 1919. He is one of the most famous Impressionist painters, and during his career Renoir painted over 4,000 different works.