Armand Guillaumin exhibited six times with the Impressionist group: more than Monet, Renoir, and other painters considered protagonists of the movement. Not only did he take part in most of the group’s exhibitions, but he was also one of its primary motivators, acting as a mediator between the different factions within the movement and devoting himself to resolving the practical problems of organizing exhibitions.
A complex and tormented artist, Guillaumin is one of the great forgotten figures of Impressionism, perhaps because of his very personal interpretation of the new painting. His gaze is restless, never satisfied, and he expresses himself in a palette that is invariably quite lively, with occasionally strident chromatic combinations and unexpected flashes of colour that seem to foreshadow the expressive violence of Munch or Van Gogh. Perhaps closer to Cézanne than to Monet and his companions, Guillaumin is represented in this exhibition by
a landscape from the late ‘60s, when his dialogue with the experiments of the future Impressionists is still evident. With just a few brushstrokes and a palette saturated with light, he captures the atmosphere and life along a stretch of the Seine, not far from the Pont de Sully.