b. Paris, 1832 - d. Paris, 1883
Édouard Manet, a major French master of the 19th century, studied for six years at the École des Beaux Arts in the atelier of Thomas Couture. Manet graduated in 1856. He had a decisive preference for Old Masters and modern life, and gradually introduced modern aesthetics and bold techniques into his paintings. He replaced the tonal gradations of academic practice with vivid contrasts of colors. The Impressionists greatly admired him for his ability to free himself from conventions of literary and moral statements and for his bright colors.