Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) is universally acclaimed and celebrated: museums pride themselves on his paintings, crowds flock to his retrospectives. His work shows art at its most light-hearted, sensual and luminous. Renoir never wanted anything ugly in his paintings, nor any dramatic action. “I like pictures which make me want to wander through them when it’s a landscape,” he said, “or pass my hand over breast or back if it’s a woman.” Renoir’s entire oeuvre is dominated by the depiction of women—again and again he painted “these faunesses with their pouting lips” (Mallarmé) and invented a new image of feminine beauty and sensuality. A prolific painter—he made several thousand works in his lifetime—he is perhaps the most beloved of the Impressionists.
Peter H. Feist studied art history, history and archaeology in Halle, where he was assistant lecturer from 1952-1958, receiving his doctorate in 1958. From 1958-1981 he worked at the Humboldt University, Berlin, from 1982-1990 he was the director of the Institute for Aesthetics and Art Studies of the GDR Academy of Sciences in East Berlin. Feist has published numerous books on the history and theory of art, including TASCHEN's Pierre-Auguste Renoir and, as co-author, Impressionism. He lives and works in Berlin.
About the series
Each book in TASCHEN’s Basic Art series features:
a detailed chronological summary of the life and oeuvre of the artist, covering his or her cultural and historical importance
a concise biography
approximately 100 illustrations with explanatory captions