Entries from April 2011

A Frog on a Lilly Pad

April 30, 2011

frog Frogs are very loud these days at Giverny.

The rest of the year, they are rather shy, and you rarely see them. But in Spring, especially in April, they croak.

The big bubbles the toad inflate on their cheeks betray them, although their color matches perfectly the water lilly pad they are seated on.

Their choir is not continuous. It sounds all of a sudden in the silent air. One frog starts, and quickly all the other ones reply, louder and louder. After a minute or two, they stop briskly.

I suppose they believe they sung harmoniously and are waiting for the applause of the visitors walking around Claude Monet’s pond.

Pink Blossom at Giverny

April 15, 2011

spring-blossom In the 19th Century, trees used to be white in Spring. There were white blossoms of cherry trees, white plum trees, white pear trees… Apple trees were slightly tinted with pink when budding, but became white when in bloom. Only southern trees like peach or apricot trees could be pink, however they were rarely to be seen in Normandy.

So we can imagine the novelty of introducing exotic varieties like crab apples, Japanese cherry or plum trees in a little village on the countryside like Giverny. Their pink blossom must have looked unique to Monet, and to his neighbours.

The pink exotic trees are widely spread by now, but in April their short beauty still enchants Spring in Claude Monet’s gardens.

Monet’s First Studio at Giverny

April 3, 2011

monet-studioSixty replicas, that is to say very good copies, have just been hung on the walls of Monet’s first studio at Giverny, making the place even more atmospheric.

Untill last year, visitors could see prints on canvas on the walls. The new copies are now real paintings on canvas. They were made by a French gallery, galerie Trubetskoy in Paris. The chosen pictures were all in Monet’s own collection of his own work in his late years. These were the paintings he loved most and didn’t want to sell.

In addition, all the details of the studio have been checked on old photographs to be as accurate as possible. The result is stunning and really moving.