Book Club: The Private Lives of the Impressionists

Thursday, January 26
6 pm

The Private Lives of Impressionists by Sue Roe

The Private Lives of the Impressionists
By Sue Roe

From Art theft to the scandalous lives of artists, the museum’s book club is never boring. January’s book club selection will transport readers to the studios, salons and rowdy riverside bars of Paris as readers discuss The Private Lives of the Impressionists by Sue Roe. Filled with maps and illustrations, Roe’s book is a lively biographical take on the key artists of the impressionist movement. Book club will also include a guided tour of Landscapes from the Age of Impressionism.

The Museum’s Book Club is free but requires registration.  Additional charges may apply for non-members for some events.

Please call 330.376.9186 x 230 to register.

Review of The Private Lives of the Impressionists in Publishers Weekly:

From Monet and Pissarro’s first meeting in Paris in 1860 to art dealer Paul Durand-Ruel’s influential 1886 Impressionist exhibition in New York City, the group known as the Impressionists—Manet, Monet, Pissarro, Cézanne, Renoir, Degas, Sisley, Morisot and Cassatt—struggled to build their reputations, support themselves financially and create meaningful personal lives. In this meticulously researched and vividly written book, British writer Roe (Gwen John) argues that their drive for success was the strongest unifying factor among this diverse group of artists, including the antisocial, celibate Degas, the socialist Pissarro and the chronically depressed Sisley, who resented the Impressionists’ meager public appreciation until the very end of his life. Roe’s nuanced portraits of these artists include personal details both small—the American Cassatt’s booming voice and “atrocious” French accent—and significant—Manet’s illegitimate son and his upper-middle-class family’s elaborate efforts to conceal the child’s existence. The result is a comprehensive and revealing group portrait, superbly contextualized within the period’s volatile political, socioeconomic and artistic shifts. Roe’s book will be of great interest to both art and social historians as well as to the general reader.

The book is available for purchase in the Museum Store and through Amazon and Barnes &Noble.

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