Summer's Day: Berthe Morisot

Summer’s Day: Berthe Morisot

Summer’s Day is an 1879 painting in the Impressionist style by the leading female French artist Berthe Morisot. This work is located in the National Gallery in London, United Kingdom.

Analysis of Morisot’s Summer’s Day

The painting depicts two women sitting in a boat, surrounded by a backdrop of a lake. The woman in the center is dressed in a white dress and a straw hat, and appears to be lost in thought. Her posture is relaxed, and she is gazing out at the viewer with a gentle expression on her face. The sun is shining brightly, casting dappled reflections on the lake and highlighting the vibrant colors of the trees in the background.

Morisot’s brushwork in this painting is loose and impressionistic, capturing the feeling of the moment rather than a photorealistic representation. The vibrant colors, especially the blue sky and green foliage, convey a sense of lightness and freshness that is characteristic of the Impressionist movement. The combination of light and color creates a sense of movement and energy, which is further emphasized by the way the woman’s dress is blowing in the wind.

The subject of this painting is a departure from the typical depictions of women in 19th-century art, which often showed them as passive objects to be admired. Morisot’s woman is an active participant in the scene, and the painting invites the viewer to imagine what she might be thinking or feeling. This reflects Morisot’s own experiences as a woman in a male-dominated society, as well as her desire to challenge traditional gender roles.

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