Edouard Manet, Banks of the Seine at Argenteuil, 1874

Edouard Manet, Banks of the Seine at Argenteuil, 1874

This painting is probably Manet’s most serious exploration of plein-air Impressionism. It was partly painted outdoors during a summer visit to Claude Monet and his family.

Monet lived in Argenteuil, a rapidly developing town on the outskirts of Paris. His wife, Camille, and son Jean posed for the figures on the riverbank. Bright colours and quick strokes of paint vividly convey the summer light and the ripples on the water.