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Berthe Morisot -- Cofounder of Impressionism

Berthe Morisot was a woman that helped to define Impressionism.  She was born in 1841 in France and had taken private art lessons throughout all of her childhood.  Her instructor always said that she was quite talented, and she knew that she had found her place in life. 

The Mother and Sister of the Artist, 1869-70.

Another cofounder of the Impressionist movement, Eduard Manet, introduced her to the new style.  They became very close, and it wasn't long until Morisot began to contribute to the movement also.  As she became more involved with it, her style drastically changed from solid and confined to loose and expressive. 

The Cradle, 1872.

Berthe Morisot rarely painted public scenes.  Instead, she focused mainly on domestic subjects, especially her daughter Julie.  She also included her husband, Eugene Manet (Eduard's brother), in many of her paintings. 

Julie Manet and her greyhound Laertes, 1893.

During her lifetime, Morisot never fully gained the recognition that she deserved.  A critic was even quoted to have said of her, "This woman's work is exceptional.  Too bad she's not a man!"  Also, after her death in 1895, her death certificate states that, "Mme Morisot was without any profession."  I think it a shame that so much talent went unrecognized until years after her death.