Pierre-Auguste Renoir, (1841-1919, French), was a French painter who led the development of the Impressionism. Born into a working class family, as a boy he worked in a porcelain factory where his interest in art blossomed. In 1862, he started to study art in Paris. There he met Claude Monet. Renoir held his first exhibition at the Paris Salon in 1864, but interest in his art was hindered by the Franco-Prussian War. In 1874, he joined the artists, Monet, Sisley, Pissarro and several others to hold the first impressionist exhibition. In order to earn a living, Renoir started painting portraits and became well known for his successful painting, Mme Charpentier and her Children in 1878 in which he includes a barely visible cat in Mme’s Charpentier’s lap. Renoir included cats in many of his paintings as a symbol of motherhood and sensuality. He became friends with Suzanne Valadon, another cat lover, and used her as a model in The Bathers. He married Aline Victorine Charigot in 1890 and preceded to include her and his daughter in many of his paintings. In the last years of his life, Renoir suffered from rheumatoid arthritis, but still continued to paint. Renoir lived long enough, however, to visit the Louvre and see some of his paintings hanging there. On December 3rd, 1919, he died in the village of Cagnes-sur-Mer.