FIRST LINE FRIDAYS

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Chapter One, “La Vie Moderne”    20 July 1880

“He rode the awkward steam-cycle along the ridge to catch glimpses of the domes and spires of Paris to the east, then turned west and careened headlong down the long steep hill toward the village of Bougival and the Seine. With his right elbow cast in plaster, he could barely reach the handlebar, but he had to get to the river. Not next week. Not tomorrow. Now.  Idleness had been itching him worse than the maddening tickle under the cast.  Only painting would be absorbing enough to relieve them both. Steam hissed out of the engine, but it built up inside of him.”

This is our first glimpse of Auguste Renoir, wobbling and sliding down an embankment on a steam-cycle, presented by historical novelist, Susan Vreeland. How Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party came to be, changed the school if Impressionism…

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