Sorolla: INTO THE LIGHT of Impressionism & Luminism

"Fascinating lecture on the progression of Sorolla's style.  Loved his mixture of naturalism and Impressionism to create his own Illumination.  Karla has a great understanding of his works and you leave the class feeling stimulated.  Looking forward to the next one! "

-Mimi Carrera, Valencia


"What a wonderful lecture from Karla this morning!  Her understanding of Sorolla, his style, subjects was fascinating to hear. Karla is passionate about this great Spanish painter with his close ties to Javea. The vast array of paintings she used to illustrate his work was greatly appreciated and I finished the lecture feeling able to appreciate the work of this painter better in the future. Many of the pictures used in the lecture are not available to be seen in Spain. I look forward to hearing more from Karla."

-Lorna Ainsworth


"With a keen eye for details, Karla makes the paintings of Sorolla come alive. This time we were able to capture the action, the expression of extreme movements and the joy in the making of a painting, using vigorous brush stroking, but mixing this with dabs/ little blobs light. What a unique style Sorolla developed and his work became known all over the world. And how great to admire his naturalistic and impressionist style with themes from our own Jávea beach, reflecting the sunlight on the water, capturing intimate scenes of the maritime community. Sorolla lets us see the wind, feel the rain and sunshine. Fantastic. Karla teaching style is full of clear information and interaction."

-Trudi van Dorp, Benitachell


While conducting a study / stay for six months in Paris in 1885, Joaquín Sorolla learnt everything about the impressionist movement and their style of painting. He saw how light and painting outside in the open air, without the controls of lighting in a studio, had many different effects on an image. He also understood how their philosophy towards painting was modern in its aspects merging with the new discoveries in the optical sciences, but at the time, he was not ready to neglect his classical training. 

It was only years later, once he had made some money, that he felt free enough to dabble in the genre without constraints. As soon as he started, he was hooked and never wished to paint indoors again, unless necessary. He did see the value of keeping elements of his classical training as part of his work and hence developed his own unique style by blending the two. 

In this lecture, we will explore  his evolution from Naturalism to Impressionism and finally Luminism. Here we find his paintings are now concerned with sun kissed seascapes, children, intimate moments, and other landscapes that the general public continue to marvel over to this day. 


Impressionism is a 19th-century art movement characterized by relatively small, thin, yet visible brush strokes, open composition, emphasis on accurate depiction of light in its changing qualities (often accentuating the effects of the passage of time), ordinary subject matter, inclusion of movement as a crucial element of human perception and experience, and unusual visual angles and reflections. 

Luminism is a late-impressionist or neo-impressionist style in painting which devotes great attention to light effects but is characterized by attention to detail and the hiding of brushstrokes.