The Self Portrait, painted by Gustave Caillebotte around 1892, is an expressionist work that represents the painter’s inner conflict. It is displayed at the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, France and has dimensions of 40.5 x 32.5 cm. Caillebotte was a member and patron of the Impressionists and was known for his realistic style of painting.
Born in 1848 into a wealthy upper-class Parisian family, Caillebotte spent his young adulthood studying law, working as an engineer, and fighting in the Franco-Prussian War. Later on in life, he developed an interest in photography which influenced his artwork. The Self Portrait is a unique synthesis of academic and Impressionist styles.
It is interesting to note that although the painting can be viewed at Musée d’Orsay currently, it was created for a private collection which reflects Caillebotte’s notoriety as a prominent artist during his lifetime. The artwork’s display at Musée d’Orsay has helped to promote Caillebotte’s contribution to art history even if he had previously received mixed reviews for his artistry endeavors during his time as many critics preferred more traditional forms such as academic style painting over impressionist techniques like those used by other famous artists like Claude Monet.