Happy Birthday Claude Monet













Claude Monet made a number of paintings of his flat bottomed studio boat borrowed from his friend Caillebotte.  In the summer and fall of 1891 Monet completed 24 paintings of the poplars in a marsh along the banks of the Epte River a few kilometers upstream from his home and studio.  There were three groups of paintings — in one group the paintings have towering. The trees, which belonged to the commune of Limetz, were put up for auction before Monet had completed all of his paintings so he purchased them in order to finish his work. He later sold the trees back to the lumber merchant who wanted them.

Monet is known for his series of oil paintings depicting water lilies, serene gardens, and Japanese footbridges. Known as “the Father of French Impressionism,” Monet manipulated light and shadow to portray landscapes in a way unprecedented in the traditional art scene of the late 19th century.

Born in Paris in 1840, Monet began drawing as a young boy. He attended a school of the arts and in his teen years sold charcoal caricatures of local personages. He learned about oil painting and en plein air (outdoors) painting and made them his hallmark.

At the age of 28 Monet, depressed with the struggle to support himself and his family, jumped off a bridge into the Seine. Fortunately he survived and was able to form connections to like-minded artists — like Pierre-Auguste Renoir– who chafed at the traditional style of painting taught by the Académie and voilà: French impressionism was born.

From 1883 until his death in 1926 Monet lived in Giverny in northern France. Over the years he hired gardeners to plant everything from poppies to apple trees in his garden. turning it into a tranquil and beautiful place for him to paint. After he became wealthy from sales of his works he invested heavily in his garden. He built a Japanese footbridge across his pond and he imported water lilies from Egypt and South America. The pond and water lilies which he observed in various lighting and perspectives became a major focus of his paintings. Indeed, he made over 250 paintings of the water lily pond.


In 1980 Monet’s former home in Giverny has been open to tourists to see his gardens, woodcut prints, and mementos. Each year, hundreds of thousands of people visit Giverny to walk through the artist’s gardens and refurbished home.

An artist is a conductor to another place and time. I’m a grateful and frequent traveler with Monet.







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