Regarded by her fellow impressionists as a ‘virtuoso colourist’, Berthe Morisot (1841–95) strove to be considered an equal among her male peers – an uphill struggle at a time when women were generally forbidden from taking formal artistic training. Nevertheless, she succeeded in forging a career, gaining respect, becoming a key player and creating a body of work that has stood the test of time. Her impressionism vibrates with light and spontaneity and yet possesses a density of form through the deft use of colour. Inevitably she painted what she experienced: scenes of intimate domestic and family life, gardens, flowers, landscapes – representing the real, unfiltered day-to-day life of 19th-century women – from the tender depiction of maternal love in The Cradle to the Far-Eastern inspired Julie with her Greyhound Laërte.
This gorgeous book introduces the reader to the background, life and work of the artist, followed by a curated selection of her best work in exquisite full-page reproductions.
Ann Kay has edited or written a wide range of material on art and culture – from books, magazines and journals to exhibition catalogues and websites, for all ages – including work on two titles about the French Impressionist circle. As well as Flame Tree, her writing has been published by Dorling Kindersley, Penguin and Thames and Hudson, among many others. She has project-managed books for the National Gallery and Royal Academy, and on behalf of the Association for Art History co-curates public art talks in Bristol.