The Easel

Getty exhibition makes a case for the enduring power of Theodore Rousseau

Theodore Rousseau was nearly great. His “luminous” landscapes sold for huge sums. But a mere seven years after his death the first Impressionist exhibition announced an entirely new way of portraying life – especially city life. His eclipse thus began. Conventionally described as merely a precursor” to Impressionism, he was in fact better than that – portraying “something marvelous [that was] slowly disappearing from consciousness.”