Realism in the visual arts is a style that depicts the actuality of what the eyes can see. The term is used in different senses in art history; it may mean the same as illusionism, the representation of subjects with visual mimesis or verisimilitude, or may mean an emphasis on the actuality of subjects, depicting them without idealization, and not omitting their sordid aspects. Works may be realist in either of these senses, or both. Use of the two senses can be confusing, but depending on context the second sense is perhaps more common.

Realism as a tendency in 19th century art was related to similar movements in the theatre, literature and opera. All emphasized the depiction of everyday subjects, but by no means always discarding classical, Romantic or sentimental approaches to their treatment. The movement began in the 1850s in France. One of Gustave Courbet's most important works is A Burial at Ornans, 1849-1850, a canvas recording an event which he witnessed in September 1848. Courbet's painting of the funeral of his grand uncle became the first grand statement of the Realist style.

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Page 4 of 92   Paintings: 1100
The Sower, 1850 - Jean-Francois Millet - www.realism-in-art.org
The Sower, 1850
Jean-Francois Millet
Gypsy Blood - Edward Clifford - www.realism-in-art.org
Gypsy Blood
Edward Clifford
'Filho da Puta', the Winner of the Great St. Leger... - John Frederick Herring Snr - www.realism-in-art.org
'Filho da Puta', the Winner of the Great St. Leger...
John Frederick Herring Snr
Fire - Felix Ziem - www.realism-in-art.org
Fire
Felix Ziem
Battle of Monmouth in 1778 - Alonzo Chappel - www.realism-in-art.org
Battle of Monmouth in 1778
Alonzo Chappel
Madeleine Carlier - Paul Cesar Helleu - www.realism-in-art.org
Madeleine Carlier
Paul Cesar Helleu
Fish - Antoine Vollon - www.realism-in-art.org
Fish
Antoine Vollon
Woman With A Rake - Jean-Francois Millet - www.realism-in-art.org
Woman With A Rake
Jean-Francois Millet
Quick as lightning Injun Joe sprang for a window',... - Geoffrey Whittam - www.realism-in-art.org
Quick as lightning Injun Joe sprang for a window',...
Geoffrey Whittam
The Doctor's Waiting Room, 1870 - Vladimir Egorovic Makovsky - www.realism-in-art.org
The Doctor's Waiting Room, 1870
Vladimir Egorovic Makovsky
A Forgotten Soldier - Vasili Vasilyevich Vereshchagin - www.realism-in-art.org
A Forgotten Soldier
Vasili Vasilyevich Vereshchagin
Battle - Bela Ivanyi Grunwald - www.realism-in-art.org
Battle
Bela Ivanyi Grunwald

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Page 4 of 92   Paintings: 1100