Claude Monet's Most Famous Paintings
Who is Claude Monet?
Claude Oscar Monet was born in Paris on November 14, 1840. When he was five years old, his family moved to Le Havre, where his father founded a grocery store.
Monet has been drawing and painting since he was a child, and when he reached 15 years of age he was known as one of the best-selling local caricaturists.
This was one of Monet's hobbies that helped him make some money even in his adult life. At the age of 18, he was introduced to the Plein air style painting by a painter from Le Havre, Eugene Boudin.
In 1859, Monet studied in Paris where he met Pissarro. While working at the Gleyre studio in Paris, Monet began to associate with great painters such as Sisley, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Courbet, Cezanne, Whistler, and Manet
The Impression Painting: The Sunrise, which he had made at Le Havre was one of his most famous paintings. It that would lift his name in the ranks of other Impressionist painters when it was exhibited in 1874, at the first exhibition held by a group of radical young painters who regarded Monet as their leader.
The term "Impressionism" was initially used by Critics to ridicule Monet and his group.
Below are Claude Monet's 23 most famous paintings:
- Impression Sunrise by Claude Monet
- The Artist's Garden at Giverny by Claude Monet
- Woman with a Parasol - Madame Monet and Her Son by Claude Monet
- Poppies by Claude Monet
- San Giorgio Maggiore at Dusk by Claude Monet
- The Water Lily Pond by Claude Monet
- Luncheon on the Grass (Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe) by Claude Monet
- Women in the Garden by Claude Monet
- Water Lilies by Claude Monet
- Boulevard des Capucines by Claude Monet
- The Rue Montorgueil in Paris by Claude Monet
- Regatta at Sainte-Adresse by Claude Monet
- The Magpie by Claude Monet
- The Cliff Walk at Pourville by Claude Monet
- Springtime by Claude Monet
- Camille (The Woman in the Green Dress) by Claude Monet
- The Houses of Parliament, Sunset by Claude Monet
- Morning on the Seine near Giverny by Claude Monet
- Lady in the Garden by Claude Monet
- The Basin at Argenteuil by Claude Monet
- Regatta at Argenteuil by Claude Monet
- The Luncheon by Claude Monet
- Westminster Bridge (aka The Thames below Westminster) by Claude Monet
Claude Monet Artworks
In the winter of 1873-1874, Claude Monet's financial difficulties forced him to hold a group exhibition of "Independent" painters, of which he was a member. This exhibition took place in the Studio of a Photographer named Nadar in April and May and was scorned by critics and the public.
One critic there responded to the title of the painting of Sunrise, claiming that the title of the painting was chosen in a hurry by Monet, and dubbed Monet as an "Impressionist". According to the critic, he has seen wall coverings that are far better than this painting.
This light work on the water of Sunrise characterizes Monet's work throughout his life. In 1896, Zola said, at Monet's house,
"The water was alive, deep and especially real. The water splashed around the ship with a small stream that cuts through the greenish-white light. It extended into the greenish pool, the wind that caused the remaining vibrations, it extends the pole which breaks it reflects their image, it has a pale and dull color that illuminates with sharpness."
This work was stolen from the Musee Marmottan in 1985.
We see a row of colors in this painting. At the bottom, Monet paints, with thick brushstrokes, rows of iris sparkling in various colors of purple. The flowers are dark with white highlights.
Monet shows the brightness of the day, the sun bounces off delicate flowers. The rows of flowers are determined by the path cut into the garden. The brownish color of the ground contrasts with the bright irises.
We see a woman with an umbrella and a child next to her. Argenteuil is a popular place for families to walk around and see is where Monet painted the child and the woman.
The woman stands on the hill with a blue background. Wearing a white dress and jacket, which is blowing because of the wind.
This painting is perhaps one of the most renowned of all Impressionist paintings.
This is one of 240 canvas paintings that Monet made during his seven-year stay in Argenteuil. The housing and rural atmosphere around Argenteuil gave him much inspiration and pleasure.
Monet considered this painting a success when it was included at the first Impressionist painter exhibition in 1874. This painting was later purchased by Jean-Baptiste Faure, a person who collected Monet's work.
This painting depicts the view of the sunset on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore and the church.
Monet painted this romantic scene across the harbor, while he and his wife fell in love with the beautiful sunset with warm skies ranging from dark blue, to orange, yellow and dark red. The colorful sky was reflected in the dancing waves of the sea.
This reflective painting of the lily pond is one of 12 paintings, each painted from the same place in 1899, which Monet showed the following year in the Paris gallery owned by Paul Durand-Ruel.
To show the texture and shape of the leaves, the paint has been applied layer by layer with a palette knife, to form a thick crust.
The graceful arches of the Japanese bridge bisect the painting, mauve lines traced with green align with the surface of the pond below, and the green leaves on the top right of the painting.
The painting shows a woman sitting casually on the grass next to her is a man in a full suit. And behind them are a man and woman having a casual conversation.
Monet was influenced by Courbet, to create this huge canvas.
Monet sketched this painting in the spring of 1865. He never fully completed his composition but gave it to the owner of his house in 1877 as collateral for his house rent.
When he got it back seven years later, the painting was damaged and only fragments of it survived.
His girlfriend, Camille, posed three times or maybe even four times in this painting wearing the same rented dresses.
Monet completed this painting in Honfleur but was rejected by Salon in 1867. Fortunately, Monet's best friend, a painter named Bazille, bought the painting for 2500 francs, which was paid in installments of 50 francs per month.
At that time, the installment of money he received was the only reliable source of income.
This giant-scale oil painting shows a lily pond. There is a key part missing from Monet's Water Lilies; the horizon.
In paintings, especially landscape paintings, horizons direct the observer and define space, showing spatial relationships in a composition.
By taking the horizon out, Monet shows the water lilies all over the canvas, from end to end. This can result in images appearing flat, or perspectively tilted towards the audience.
One can see Monet's Water Lilies as starting the path to abstraction, blurring the line between non-objective art and the art that shows the subject.
Boulevard des Capucines by Claude Monet
The picture was painted from the balcony of the photographer Nadar's studio, which later hosted the First Impressionist Exhibition and where Louis Leroy came up with the term "Impressionism".
According to the photos that still exist, we can assume that the art studio occupies two floors above a 4-story building.
Monet was only interested in the effect of the light and the large shadows of the building, which at sunset cut through the wide boulevards.
In early 1879, Monet and his family lived in a large apartment in de Monceau of Paris. Monet was fascinated by the view of the city streets.
The highlight of the World's Fair was held in Paris in 1878 which happened to coincide with a public holiday on the 30th of June so that the streets of the city were filled with people who had flocked to the streets while waving the French flag.
Claude Monet painted the crowd on the balcony of The Rue Montorgueil. He worked energetically and completed two paintings within one day.
Regatta at Sainte-Adresse by Claude Monet
He was visiting his father and aunt when he painted this painting and at the same time, he painted The Beach at Sainte-Adresse.
The man in the picture depicted in a gray suit and straw hat and standing near a man sitting with a black suit is considered Monet's father.
The painting was signed by the artist on the sand in the lower-left corner.
The Regatta di Sainte-Adresse has been shown all over the world since it was first painted, although it was not displayed for nearly a decade after it was finished.
The painting was initially rejected by conventional art critics, so Monet joined other artists to hold independent exhibitions where Regatta di Sainte-Adresse was often shown.
Today, the painting is on display at The Metropolitan Museum in New York and is open to the public.
Monet spent the fall and winter of 1868 in Etretat, which was located on the coast of Normandy, after one spring of financial difficulties which almost caused him to attempt suicide by drowning himself.
He settled there with his girlfriend Camille and his son Jean who was born the previous summer.
That winter Monet returned to the subject he had once loved, a subject that could continue to inspire him for years to come, snow landscape painting.
Based on his belief that natural landscape paintings must be created directly outside, Monet would work in all weather conditions, despite how bad it goy.
The Magpie is one of two Claude Monet paintings that was rejected by the Salon in 1869.
The painting depicts what is believed to be Monet's two stepchildren, Marthe and Blanche Hoschedé, walking along the French countryside.
The landscape features colorful wildflowers facing the calm blue sea.
Monet uses soft, clear colors, and short brush strokes to give the painting a cheerful and peaceful depiction. The colors blend together, creating smooth lines and the edges come together with the landscape.
The girls function as focal points; however, their small size and inconspicuous coloration make them not the focal point of the painting, allowing viewers to observe the rest of the painting and enjoy the natural beauty of the waterfront.
Created in 1872, Monet painted Camille, his first wife. The painting is often titled 'Woman Reading'.
This painting depicts light as it finds its way through the canopy and Camille's pink dress. It is very typical of Monet to use fashionable and contemporary clothing on its models and Camille is no exception.
Monet is very concerned about Camille's face and shape and makes sure everything is portrayed intricately. The painting depicts simple domestic life and how it can look so attractive and charming through the eyes of an artist.
He finished the Camille Doncieux painting in only four days.
Beginning in February 1900, Monet began to paint views of Parliament by going to the second floor of St. Thames hospital and painting.
Monet could clearly see the Houses of Parliament and big Big Ben. The Parliament is on the right, with water on the left.
Monet would sketch the Parliament building beforehand and then paint, adding color and detail while looking at the terrace above the river.
Monet's Mornings on the Seine series did not finish until 1897 due to bad weather.
After patiently observing the scenery along the river, Monet would paint pictures of a boat.
For a long time, he woke up at dawn to paint the effects of light changing at sunrise.
Lady in the Garden by Claude Monet
This beautiful painting was painted in Monet's aunt garden, and the woman in the garden is Jeanne-Marguerite Lecadre, who is her cousin.
In 1872 on the recommendation of Edouard Manet, Claude Monet lived in the city of Argenteuil which is located on the riverbank of France.
Edouard as an older painter had lived in Gennevilliers across the river of Seine. Edouard also chose a house for Monet which is located not far from the river. Indeed the pulse of life in Argenteuil was on the river.
Monet and Manet meet almost every day and they together developed a unique painting style. This painting is one of many paintings of the river Seine made by Monet, especially in the first half of the 1870s.
The clouds, boats, and humans all seem to drift away on this peaceful Sunday.
Impressionism was born at Argenteuil where Monet, Manet, and Renoir often met to paint and discuss art.
The Seine River is drawn in a straight line, ideally to showcase the beautiful scenery. This style of painting is also very compatible with Manet.
Monet kept trying to capture the excitement of the tall sailboats that were sailing through the sparkling water.
This painting is one of Monet's works which was inherited by his rich friend and supporter, Gustave Caillebotte.
The painting depicts Monet's family just before finishing lunch and his wife Camille is walking towards the sun with an unknown guest, while Jean his son is playing with a toy in the shadow of the table. This painting was bought by Gustave Caillebotte.
During the Franco-Prussian War in July 1870, Monet fled with his family to London. He remained in London until May 1871, he then proceeded to the Netherlands before finally returning to France. Monet painted just a few paintings of the Thames, Green Park, and Hyde Park. When he lived in London.
This is one of his best works, showcasing the Houses of Parliament covered in a foggy haze. He later came to like the city (London), returning a few times, and he told the famous seller Rene Gimpel:
"I just love London in winter without its mist".
This work was shown in 1873 in London by an art vendor Paul Durand-Ruel, whom Monet initially met on his journey to London. Durand-Ruel gave Monet a significant commission for his works.
Claude Monet's Paintings
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