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Caillebotte, Gustave Biography


Gustave Caillebotte was a French painter and a generous patron of the Impressionists, whose own art works, until recently, were neglected. He was an engineer by profession, but also attended the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He met Degas, Monet, and Renoir in 1874 and helped organize the first impressionist exhibition in Paris that same year. He participated in later shows and painted some 500 works in a more realistic style than that of his friends. Gustave Caillebotte's most intriguing oil paintings are those of the broad, new Parisian boulevards. The boulevards were painted from high vantage points and were populated with elegantly clad figures strolling with the expressionless intensity of somnambulists, as in Boulevard Vu d'en Haut (1880; private collection, Paris). Gustave Caillebotte's superb collection of impressionist paintings was left to the French government on his death. With considerable reluctance the government accepted part of the collection.

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