November 21, 2016
Claude Monet, Meule (Grainstack) 1891, private collection
This very colorful sunset at Giverny behind a grainstack has just sold at auction for 81.4 million dollars, setting a new record for a work by Claude Monet.
For this sale Christie’s has published a very interesting booklet that you can read on line here. It details the making of the work and its significance in art history. You will also read why it is not a haystack!
December 31, 2013
Here is a not so famous painting by Monet that was on display in a recent exhibit at the Musee de Louviers, not far from Giverny. This oil on canvas is privately owned.
The title is “Blanche Painting with her Sister Suzanne on the Water Side”. It was painted in 1887 by Claude Monet.
Blanche was the daughter of Monet’s second wife Alice. She became his daughter-in-law by marrying Jean Monet, the painter’s eldest son.
Blanche was a talented artist. She often painted the same landscapes as Monet, in her own impressionist style, sometimes very similar to the style of the master.
Her sister Suzanne appears on numerous canvases, because she was a pretty young woman. Monet had her posing for his two attempts of a figure in open-air, aka as the girl with a parasol. (Musee d’Orsay, Paris)
July 21, 2008
When Claude Monet was 70 he conceived a crazy project: huge panels featuring his pond to be glued on the walls of a big oval room.
Somebody standing in the middle of this room would be surrounded by his relaxing work.
It took him ten years to achieve his aim. He had to build a new studio for these over-sized paintings, he became almost blind because of cataract, but he managed to paint 91meter long canvases (almost 300 feet long). They are two meter high, as high as Monet could paint when he stood. Two rooms were eventually necessary to accommodate them.
The Grandes Decorations can be seen in l’Orangerie Museum in Paris on the Place de la Concorde, opposite to Musée d’Orsay. They won’t travel ever, they cannot be dismounted. The museum has just been renovated for six years and these extremely valuable paintings didn’t move while the ceiling of their rooms were opened and transformed.
A last amazing detail about these amazing murals: Monet donated them to the French state to celebrate the victory of 1918. He donated a ten year work!