Alfred Sisley

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Sisley, Alfred

(älfrĕd` sĭs`lē, sēslā`), 1839–99, French impressionist landscape painter, b. Paris, of English parents. He studied under CorotCorot, Jean-Baptiste Camille
, 1796–1875, French landscape painter, b. Paris. Corot was one of the most influential of 19th-century painters. The son of shopkeepers, he worked in textile shops until 1822, when he began to study painting.
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, Charles Gleyre, and CourbetCourbet, Gustave
, 1819–77, French painter, b. Ornans. He moved to Paris in 1839 and studied there, learning chiefly by copying masterpieces in the Louvre. An avowed realist, Courbet was always at odds with vested authority, aesthetic or political.
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 and was (1873) a founding member of the Impressionist group. After 1871, Sisley lived modestly at Moret-sur-Loing and painted subtly shimmering small-town landscapes that reveal a wistful, lyrical sensibility. Influenced by his friends RenoirRenoir, Pierre Auguste
, 1841–1919, French impressionist painter and sculptor, b. Limoges. Renoir went to work at the age of 13 in Paris as a decorator of factory-made porcelain, copying the works of Boucher. In 1862 he entered M. C.
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 and MonetMonet, Claude
, 1840–1926, French landscape painter, b. Paris. Monet was a founder of impressionism. He adhered to its principles throughout his long career and is considered the most consistently representative painter of the school as well as one of the foremost painters
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 in his selection of colors, Sisley was less daring than Monet in his use of the "rainbow palette" and closer to the Barbizon SchoolBarbizon school
, an informal school of French landscape painting that flourished c.1830–1870. Its name derives from the village of Barbizon, a favorite residence of the painters associated with the school.
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 tradition. He is well represented in many museums, e.g., the Art Institute of Chicago, which owns Street in Moret and Sand Heaps.

Sisley, Alfred


Born Oct. 30, 1839, in Paris; died Jan. 29, 1899, in Moret-sur-Loing, near Fontainebleau. French impressionist landscape painter.

Of English descent, Sisley was the son of a merchant. From 1861 to 1863 he studied in Paris at C. Gleyre’s studio, where he became well acquainted with Monet, Renoir, and Bazille. He was also influenced by Corot. Most of Sisley’s small-scale, quiet landscapes depict the environs of Paris and the countryside of the Ile-de-France. Simple in motif, with the soft lighting Sisley favored, they are imbued with subtle lyricism and freshness. Sisley painted with a restrained but delicately light and bright palette and with a smooth technique free of spectacular effects (Snow at Louveciennes, 1873, A. S. Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow). After the mid-1880’s he used decorative elements more often in his paintings.


Brodskaia, N. Kartiny Sisleia ν Ermitazhe. Leningrad, 1963.
Daulte, F. Alfred Sisley. Lausanne, 1959. [23–1374–]