While Renoir was inspired by Pissarro's techniques and his revolutionary portrayals of rural subjects, Renoir himself inspired many of his contemporaries. His exuberance caught the attention of artists like Vincent van Gogh, who so admired Renoir’s technique. Writing to his brother Théo in 1885, Vincent had said that Renoir reminded him that "there is life in every pencil stroke," which underscores a stimulating dialogue regarding technique and composition between the two painters (quoted in Keith Wheldon, Renoir and His Art, New York, 1975, p. 120).
Located approximately 150 miles southeast of Paris, in the Champagne region, Essoyes was the home village of Renoir's wife Aline Victorine Charigot. The couple traveled to Essoyes together in 1885, where Renoir was instantly charmed by the romance of provincial life. Renoir, his wife and their three children would spend summers in Essoyes for the next three decades, purchasing a house in town in 1896. After their deaths, both Pierre-Auguste and Aline were buried in the cemetery in Essoyes.
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