Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot French, 1796-1875
“BEAUTY IN ART IS TRUTH BATHED IN AN IMPRESSION RECEIVED FROM NATURE. I AM STRUCK UPON SEEING A CERTAIN PLACE. WHILE I STRIVE FOR CONSCIENTIOUS IMITATION, I YET NEVER FOR AN INSTANT LOSE THE EMOTION THAT HAS TAKEN HOLD OF ME.”
– JEAN-BAPTISTE-CAMILLE COROT
Known for bridging the Neoclassic tradition of allegory set in nature with Realism and plein air practice, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot embarked on his artistic career by studying landscape painting. Although he initially struggled to gain acceptance in the establishment, Corot flourished as a landscapist, benefiting from multiple trips around Europe, especially Italy. His early oil sketches, painted outdoors and characterized by their bright colors, fluid brushstrokes, and prioritization of the expression of mood and atmosphere over topographical details, greatly influenced the Impressionists.
Despite only moderate success in the Salon, his body of work earned accolades from the influential poet and critic Charles Baudelaire and fellow artists such as Eugène Delacroix. Corot was the subject of major exhibitions at the Museo Reina Sofia, the Art Institute of Chicago, and several other institutions. His works are held in the collections of the Louvre Museum, the National Gallery of Art, the Musée d'Orsay, the Metropolitan Museum, and the Pushkin Museum, among others (via Artsy).