Renoir was born in Limoges, France, in 1841 and moved to Paris with his family when he was three years old. His father was a tailor and his mother a dressmaker. He was one of seven children and showed an interest in art from an early age. One of his brother’s said, “from the fact that he would use up the ends of charcoal on the walls, my parents concluded he had a bent for an artistic profession.”
In his teens he apprenticed with a porcelain painter and registered for a pass to copy paintings in the Louvre. He went on to study under Charles Gleyre where he met artists, such as Claude Monet and Alfred Sisley. They began to paint outdoors together, also known as en plein air, experimenting with new techniques of painting which became the beginnings of the Impressionist style.
Renoir met Aline Charigot in 1880. Initially, she was one of his favorite models—she is the woman holding a dog in Luncheon at the Boating Party—and later became his wife. They had three sons together. Renoir continued to paint into his seventies. He lived until 1919, age 78, when he died in Cagnes, France.