Entries Categorized as 'Claude Monet'
January 10, 2011
This tree standing alone next to the greenhouse in Monet’s garden at Giverny is a holly.
Not a wild, ordinary one: it has beautiful golden rimmed leaves. Nonetheless, the holly disappears in the magnificence of flowers during the season, when the garden is in full bloom. Nobody takes any notice of the flowerless tree.
During the winter, on the contrary, when all the flowers are dead or waiting for better times to come, the holly recovers its majesty. This is probably why its prickly leaves and red berries are very much related to the time of Christmas and New Year.
September 13, 2010
Summer is coming to an end, offering a large display of flowers in Claude Monet’s gardens at Giverny.
The flower beds that looked organised in early season are now full of overgrown plants, sunflowers, dahlias, cosmos…
Under the clematis, smaller borders catch the morning light dancing on the freshly watered gauras.
June 3, 2010
Monet’s garden at Giverny is so beautiful at the turn of May and June that it has a taste of Paradise.
In this season, spectacular flowers like irises, paeonies, wallflowers and roses bloom all at the same time.
The small walks of the garden disappear, leaving the illusion of a divine meadow adornated by the most exquisite flowers.
Not to speak about the delicate scent floating in the air…
May 1, 2010
Early in the morning, long before the first visitor arrives in Monet’s garden at Giverny, rays of orange sunshine stroke the Japanese bridge of the water garden, while a light mist raises from the pond.
Monet, who was an early bird, loved to get up before sunrise, in order not to miss a second of the dramatic show of light and water.
January 21, 2010
Walking around Monet’s pond in summertime gives a strange feeling of deja vu.
This place especially, where the long branches of three big weeping willows reach the surface of the pond, offering views on to the blooming water lilies, looks familiar.
Claude Monet loved this spot that he painted over and over again, and that is even featured on the huge Grandes Decorations at l’Orangerie.
The vertical lines mixed with the floating water lilies and the reflections on the surface of the pond challenged his command of perspective.
January 8, 2010
Monet’s pond is frozen.
A small coating of snow hides the surface like a new canvas.
Long blue shadows stretch on the shining whiteness.
Not a single flower.
Even the brave pansies are covered with a blanket of snow.
No colors, except for the green bridges.
Birds are hiding, but their prints are everywhere, like strange words written in the snow.
And the running water of the river reminds that life is awaiting under the appearant death of nature.
September 19, 2009
A detail strikes the visitors who enter Monet’s bedroom at Giverny: the bed is ridiculously small.
Claude Monet wasn’t very tall, and he didn’t share his bed with his wife. They had separate bedrooms. Not because they didn’t care, but rich families copied the aristocracy and had separate ‘appartements’, though they were connected.
Monet could get up very early without waking his wife. He loved to paint before sunrise, when the river is still covered with mist.
The bed and the armoire, which were not very expensive furniture, were painted according to Monet’s taste.
Monet had gorgeous views over his garden from his bedroom’s three windows. The painter designed his bedroom, he had it built just over the first studio. He wanted a lot of light in it.
The bedroom was the place where he hung his collection of impressionist paintings by his friends, an incredible collection of 35 canvases including 12 paintings by Cézanne, many Renoirs, Sysleys, Morisots, Manets and so on.
The desk is a beautiful antique from the 18th century.
August 13, 2009
Over 100 000 visitors will have seen the beautiful exhibition of 28 paintings by Monet at the Musee des Impressionnismes Giverny.
The exhibition started on May 1st ends on Saturday 15 August.
It will have met all the expectations by attracting crowds of Monet lovers in the village where the canvases, mostly featuring Nympheas, had been created.
The next exhibition opening on 23 August is dedicated to the oversized and colorful paintings of American artist Joan Mitchell. Joan Mitchell, a master of expressionism, was inspired by Monet’s Nympheas. She lived for years in Vetheuil, her studio neighboring Monet’s house on the river side.
For the museum, it will be sort of a flash-back to its origins. Before becoming the Musee des Impressionnismes Giverny, it used to be the Musee d’Art Americain Giverny.
March 6, 2009
Monet and Manet were good friends, as apparent by Edouard Manet’s painting of Claude Monet and his family in their garden at Argenteuil.
The woman in white is Camille, who often posed for Monet and his fellow painters, especially Manet and Renoir.
The relaxed boy leaning against her is Jean, their eldest son. A second one, Michel, was born shortly before Camille died.
Both sons married, but neither of them had children. Monet had no grand-children. However, he lived surrounded by young people because his second wife Alice brought six children in the wedding. And she had many decendents, today about one hundred!
January 28, 2009
This is a view of Claude Monet standing in his first studio amidst his favorite canvases. The light of the afternoon is almost palpable.
This room located in his main house at Giverny was turned into his sitting-room after 1890.
When Monet became successful, he built a new house in the corner of his garden, where he moved his studio. He had now a well lit large room to work in and to store his paintings. The former studio became a place where he used to have a liquor after lunch, where he would sit to read a gardening book or a novel by Maupassant. Monet also used to write many letters.
The paintings for sale where displayed in the second studio whereas he kept the ones he cherished too much to sell them in the first studio.
The picture was made in springtime according to the tulips behind Monet. The photo reveals how much the painter loved flowers. There were at least six vases in his studio on this day!
October 25, 2008
The fallen leaves of the three liquidambars look like stars picked on the surface of Monet’s pond at Giverny.
They twinkle against the dark blue reflection of the sky.
In 19th Century France it was a common pattern to paint murals of stars in the night on the ceilings of churches.
October 24, 2008
This is the Famous Japanese Bridge that Claude Monet painted so often.
It deserves lots of capitals because it has become the icon of the painter’s garden at Giverny.
In the bright sunshine its green turns almost blue, as can be observed on Monet’s paintings of this motive.
The picture was made in July when the wisteria tangled on the arbor flowers for a second time. This second blooming while the leaves are out is by far more discreet than the first one in May.
July 8, 2008
When he didn’t paint, Monet liked to be well dressed.
Look at him standing in the main alley of his garden at Giverny. Monet did his best to look elegant. I am not sure he always achieved this target, for he had a funny and complicated way of dressing. He liked round shaped jackets, as a result he looked a bit like a big insect.
Anyway, Monet went to the best tailors in Paris and ordered expensive suits, even when he was short of money. He just didn’t pay for the bills… I was told the English aristocrats didn’t either in the 19th century. Obviously, Monet’s tailors were not enthralled and the painter would get into troubles, of course.