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The first UK exhibition of paintings by the dramatic, Romantic painter in 50 years explores how his work went on to inspire many of the modern greats.

Delacroix was a revolutionary; his experiments with expressive brushstrokes, optical effects, bold colour and exotic subject matter transformed French painting in the 19th century, as well paving the way for new thinking among subsequent generations of artists. At the time of his death in 1863 he was the most revered painter in Paris, having created an estimated 9,140 works.

This thematic display draws on examples of Delacroix's religious, historical, literary and landscape painting to explore his remarkable influence on a variety of artists, from his contemporaries Courbet and Géricault through to 20th century greats Van Gogh, Matisse and Kandinsky. As Cézanne would later say: 'We all paint in Delacroix's language'.

Delacroix: Tree of influence

How did Delacroix influence artists from Vincent van Gogh to Jackson Pollock? Find out with our infographic.

In particular it highlights how his work directly contributed to the founding of Impressionism, with key pieces by Manet and Renoir – who would practise by making copies of his work – and Renoir, who bought one of the artist's portraits for his own collection.

National Gallery

Trafalgar Square, London, Greater London, WC2N 5DN

020 7747 2885


Opening times

Daily 11am-6pm (Fri 11am-9pm).

Closed 24-26 Dec and 1 Jan.

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