After high school, young Seurat went to art school, served in the army, then returned to Paris where he set himself up in a large loft-type studio to paint. Recalling his childhood in the park, he set about trying to duplicate in the then avant-garde color of the impressionists, the feeling of those gentle, quiet, carefree days. He chose as the subject of his first major work a scene featuring male bathers on the banks of the Seine outside Paris. Though influenced by the impressionists, he lacked their spontaneous temperament. He worked tirelessly. His style or mannr of painting has been called Pointilism. With it, he pushed Impressionist color theory into the realm of scientific experimentation, breaking new ground with every stroke of his tiny points of color. Exhibiting for the first time in the Impressionist's Salon de Refuse', even the they didn't know what to do with him. His painting was too large and too strange to put in one of their main exhibition rooms so he was relegated to a dark corner, literally behind a door.
|A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,|
1884-86, Georges Seurat
Undeterred, Seurat went back to work, spending three lonely years painting literally from first light to candle light a painting even larger and more daring than the first. A Sunday on La Grande Jatte also presented a view of the Paris riverside but this time with a whole melange of strolling, relaxing Parisian society.
|Circus Side Show (detail),|
1889, George Seurat