4 Painters on Manet

Edouard Manet, Emile Zola, 1868 Musée d'Orsay Donation of Mrs Emile Zola, 1918 ©
Edouard Manet (1832-1883) Emile Zola, 1868, oil on canvas, H. 146.5; W. 114 cm Paris, Musée d'Orsay Donation of Mrs Emile Zola, 1918 © RMN (Musée d'Orsay) / Hervé Lewandowski

Martin Gayford talks to four painters - Tom Phillips, Christopher Le Brun, Michael Craig-Martin, and Sean Scully - about the paintings of Manet on the occasion of the recent exhibition Manet: Portraying Life at the Royal Academy, London.

Gayford writes that each artist "who talks about Manet here admires him as a supreme master of the brush, using it both slowly and at astonishing speed. Suitably, Sean Scully RA pays tribute to Manet the colourist, meaning not that he used a rainbow palette but that he did unprecedented and marvellous things with the shades – sometimes using just black and cream. Michael Craig-Martin RA talks about Manet the modernist, anticipating the century to come in the way he structured a picture, his enigmatic approach to narrative, and – what everybody comes back to – the marvellous things he did to paint with his brush."