Charles Baudelaire 's The Fugitive Contingent Essay example

1890 Words Nov 16th, 2015 null Page
‘Ephemeral… fugitive… contingent’: these words written by Charles Baudelaire in 1863 express the very nature of metropolitan life in the late nineteenth century. Urban renewal across Europe had given way to a new, fast-paced way of life, and nowhere was this more evident than in Paris: the then cultural centre of the western world. Crowds of people would converge upon Haussmann’s wide boulevards, swiftly navigating through the city to see and be seen by their fellow Parisians. Painting en plein air, the Impressionists aimed to capture these fleeting moments through rapid, loose brushstrokes which saw a complete revolution in pictorial technique. Having lived in Paris, Gauguin, Van Gogh and Cézanne were actively involved with the Impressionist movement, yet each possessed a desire to escape the city in order to develop their style within rural and foreign spaces.

A native Parisian, Paul Gauguin was born in 1848, yet despite spending much of his early adult life in the city, he held a strong fascination for the people and places that existed outside. Only a year after his birth, Gauguin and his family moved to Peru due to rising conservatism in Paris, exposing him to an exotic way of life to which he would eventually return. By his early twenties, Gauguin, now living in Paris, had married and was raising a family, whilst working as a successful stockbroker. However, art remained his true passion, showing an impressive ability as a painter and sketcher whilst collecting many…

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