The End of Lunch (1879) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir

The End of Lunch - Pierre-Auguste Renoir - 1879

Artwork Information

TitleThe End of Lunch
ArtistPierre-Auguste Renoir
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationStädel, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

About The End of Lunch

“The End of Lunch,” an artwork by Pierre-Auguste Renoir created in 1879, is an oil on canvas that exemplifies the Impressionist movement. Characteristic of genre painting, this piece encapsulates a social scene and can be viewed at the Städel in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Renoir’s piece is particularly renowned for its vivid portrayal of a casual moment shared among individuals.

The artwork presents a trio of figures engaged in a seemingly intimate and leisurely repast. At the forefront, a woman donned in a light blue attire with delicate floral embellishments at her collar smiles subtly, while clutching what appears to be a slender flower or a cigarette. Her attention is directed inward, adding an element of introspection to the scene. Beside her, a second woman, depicted in darker clothing and a black hat, stands observantly, her gaze slightly averted from the viewer and potentially fixated on someone or something outside of the frame. The composition’s dynamic is further enriched by the presence of a seated gentleman, who is almost entirely engrossed in lighting his cigarette, epitomizing the relaxed ambiance of the gathering.

The table is modestly set, with transparent glassware and porcelain cups bearing floral motifs that mirror the Impressionist fascination with capturing the play of light and reflective surfaces. The remnants of the meal, including what appears to be pieces of chocolate and a decanter, contribute to the sense of casual luxury and display a characteristic blend of still life with the genre scene. In the background, the hints of a lush garden setting meld with the mottled brushstrokes that are a hallmark of Renoir’s technique. These elements unite to convey an air of ephemeral tranquility, an everyday elegance that is both captured and celebrated in this luminous work.

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