Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot was among those who managed to swerve away from romanticism, a genre which he had in practice during his trips to Italy until the early 1830's. He had afterwards an enormous influence over many painters, such as Eugène Lavieille, Jules Breton, Paul-Désiré Trouillebert, Léon Lhermitte, Antoine Chintreuil, François Louis Français, Constant Dutilleux and Henri Harpignies.
Narcisse Virgile Diaz de la Pena
Clearing in the Fontainbleau forest
Corot did not only work in Fontainebleau, which in fact was rather the base of Barye, Millet, Diaz, Troyon, Dupré or Rousseau and at one time that of Daumier. Still, he did influence much the Barbizon artists.
Barbizon saw the opening of its first inn in 1822, the "auberge Ganne" which hosted so many artists who lived in this small hamlet which seemed at the other end of the world. It was there that Théodore Rousseau landed there in 1833 before deciding to stay in this bucolic place during many years.
As soon as the year 1836, Barbizon became a kind of pilgrimage spot for many artists, notably Jules Dupré, Constant Troyon and Narcisse Diaz de la Pena who had lost a leg at 12 ans after being bitten by an adder in the Meudon forest .Landscape painting then started to become much popular in 1840 after the arrival in Barbizon of Courbet and Barye who later turned to sculpture.
Study for the oak tree "le Clovis" in the Fontainebleau forest
In 1849 Barbizon saw the arrival of Charles Jacques and Jean-François Millet, a painter somewhat detested by the bourgeois society whereas Paris had been facing another revolution the previous year.