Georges Seurat (1859-1891)
As a child of a well-to-do Parisian family, Seurat spent a number of years at the prestigious classical, academic art school École des Beaux-Arts. Although he never graduated, the theoretical knowledge he acquired remained visible in his work.
His initial years as an independent artist were spent on studies in Conté crayons that enabled him to meticulously develop his own ideas on the distribution of planes and contrasts.
In 1883, he completed Bathers at Asnières, his first major painting. Although the work still exhibits the hallmarks of Impressionism, it also displays the carefully composed and painted coloured planes, and strongly delineated figures that would become so characteristic of Neo-Impressionism. The painting was rejected by the Salon, but attracted great interest from fellow painters at the Groupe des Artistes Indépendants exhibition.