Approach to painting landscapes and scenes of everyday life developed in France in the nineteenth century and based on the practice of painting finished pictures out of doors and spontaneously ‘on the spot’ rather than in a studio from sketches

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Impressionism was developed by Claude Monet and other Paris-based artists from the early 1860s (although this process can be said to have been pioneered in Britain by John Constable around 1813–17).

It resulted in a greater awareness of light and colour and the shifting pattern of the natural scene. Brushwork became rapid and broken into separate dabs to render these effects.

The first group exhibition was in Paris in 1874 and the work was greeted with derision. Monet’s Impression, Sunrise was particularly singled out and gave its name to the movement. Seven further exhibitions were then held at intervals until 1886.

Other core artists, Camille Pissarro, Auguste Renoir, plus Edgar Degas and Edouard Manetin slightly tangential relationship.