Charles-François Daubigny

French (1817 - 1878)
Charles-François Daubigny Cottages at Barbizon: Evening 1817 - 1878


Born 1817
Died 1878
Nationality French
Birth place Paris
Death place Paris

Daubigny's landscapes had a significant impact on the Impressionists, whom he helped and encouraged. He came from a family of artists and began his career as a painter of ornaments. He failed twice to win the Rome Prize for Historical Landscape, and turned to concentrate on painting directly from nature, finding inspiration working with other artists, including Corot, in and around the Forest of Fontainebleau. Daubigny travelled widely in France but eventually settled in Auvers on the River Oise north of Paris. He enjoyed painting riverscapes and devised a studio-boat to work in.

Glossary terms

  • The Barbizon School were an informal group of artists who were active between about 1830-1870. They would gather to paint in the forest of Fontainebleau near the village of Barbizon, a name which later historians used to refer to them.

  • A French expression meaning ‘in the open air’. It refers to the practice of painting a complete picture outside as apposed to a creating a preparatory sketch or study. The technique was developed during the mid 1800’s by Constable in Britain, in France by the Barbizon School painters such as Courbet and Corot and later by the Impressionist painters including Claude Monet and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. Artists using the technique sought to capture the essence of natural light. In the second half of the nineteenth century the technique spread throughout much of Europe and into America.

  • A group of Dutch, realist painters working in The Hague in the second half of the nineteenth century, painting in subdued colours to convey the atmosphere and impression of moment in their works. Members included Anton Mauve, Johannes Bosboom, Joseph Israels, Jacob Maris, and his brothers Matthijs and Willem.