10 Famous Works of Monet (Paris, November 14, 1840- Giverny, December 5, 1926)
Born on November 14, 1840, Oscar-Claude Monet, had a childhood set in bucolic environments that he liked to contemplate. Melting pot of the impressionism, impregnated in his different works, he dedicated himself to the natural spaces glorifying them with a vibrant, agile and luminous force.
Between 1851 and 1857 he drew under the tutelage of Jacques-François Ochard, helping him to perfect his inclination towards caricature. Eugène Boudin, a painter of the time, exhorted him to paint landscapes in the open air, and that would mark his life.
He declared himself a painter after the death of his mother; and by that time the appearance of his first landscapes appeard. He studied the figures at the Swiss Academy of Painting in 1860, influencing him the School of Barbizon, contrary to the idealized landscape; these posed a new style of pictorial realism centered on the impressions of light, a determining idea in Monet, who, self-taught, introduced, in his outdoor painting, effects of light finely studied, as well as the recreation of the influence of time on nature through loose brushstrokes that will define the base of his painting: the atmosphere, the intensity of light and the watery reflections. In 1872 his work “Impression, soleil levant” gave the name to the impressionist style in which he was the undisputed leader in the universal artistic world.
10 Famous Works of Monet
1. Femmes au Jardin -1866-Louvre Museum, Paris
The influences of the School of Barbizon begin to be noticed in this painting, one of the first works of Monet, in which begins to notice the changes of the artist towards his flourishing impresionist technique. “Women in the Garden”, as it is known in English, shows the vestiges of the classic models and a summery vivid day in heat, in this one, a group of women of the time with their monumental dresses, enjoy it and the color of its flowers.
2. The Terrace at Saint-Andresse-1867- Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Painted on the terrace of a house overlooking the sea in the city Spa of Sainte-Adresse, was created after the artist left the mother of his son in Paris in a simulated attempt to bring family ties, therefore, some of the people portrayed in this work are his own family. The canvas of high perspective, bright colors and luminous play, seems in turn an exaltation to the way of life of the former French bourgeoisie.
3. Bain à la Grenouillère-1869-Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
The genius Monet recreates one of his favorite scenarios, in this one, together with companions like Renoir, he would prepare the splendid impressionist style of his works. The work shows the “Camembert” of the restaurant of the island “La Grenouillère” next to the river Seine, it was a meeting place of the French bourgeoisie where artists and intellectuals would find shelter for their ideas, so it would serve as an inspiration for Monet and Renoir where they would create the unique techniques that describe the impressionist style.
4. La Pie-1869- Musée d’Orsay, Paris
“The Magpie” was painted during the winter of 1868-1869 near the commune of Étretat in Normandy. It is considered the first snowy landscape of the artist and is a fervent salvo from which impressionism had been born years before its advent, the lighting approaches obtained in the game of leftovers and lights on snow are impressive, achieved with striking light and bright colors of a Monet’s palette, more concerned with perception than with description.
5. Impression, soleil levant-1873- Marmottan Monet Museum, Paris
It is the creation of the recognition of impressionism as a pictorial style. Therefore, it will be the author’s most famous painting. Dated in 1873, when El Havre the artist, from a window and at dawn; eager for a profound renovation of the arts, he ventures to create a work from the port of the city in which he spent much of his childhood. In this would violate prevailing artistic canons, managing to masterfully capture a dynamic watery effect and a fleeting atmosphere.
6. Woman with umbrella-1875-National Gallery of Art, Washington
At the height of the recognition of impressionism, Monet’s ‘Woman with umbrella’ is a portrait of his wife Camille and his son Jean in Argenteuil. The painting is so natural that it almost looks like a photograph, with the exception that this oil on canvas of 100 x 81 centimeters took Monet several hours.
7. La Gare Saint-Lazare -1877- Musée d’Orsay, Paris
It is one of the twelve canvases made by Monet in 1877 of the train station of San Lazare in Paris, it is an impressionist manifestation after discovering cities as landscapes, the series, his first on a theme, tries to unveil the atmosphere of the place at different times of the day, therefore, the volutes of smoke are the instrument of capture with which he tries to submerge the viewer in the environment of modern city life.
8. Bridge over a Pond of Water Lilies-1899- Museum of the Orangery of the Tuileries, Paris
This painting is based on the study of the water lilies that he installed in his garden, this one, a set of exotic plants whose contemplation would become the most recurrent theme of the last stage of his pictorial career, was a series of paintings created during the stage as gardener of his house in Giverny, the way he captures the reflections of the light in the water of the pond and the unparalleled color achieved with loose brushwork is masterly.
9.Houses of Parlaments (1900-1904)
Between 1900 and 1904, Monet develops another series, this time dedicated to the London Houses of Parlaments, in total there are 19 paintings made from Saint Thomas Hospital during the sunset, in them, you can see the Palace of Westminster from the same perspective. The artist does not pay attention to show the atmosphere of London’s modernism with a dense palette that reflects the oozing of the city between mists, the brushstrokes are more compact in the reflections of the sun on the Thames.
10. Saint-Georges Majeur au Crépuscule-1908-1912- Bridgestone Art Museum, Tokyo
“Twilight in Venice” is a classic of impressionism whose vibrant orange palette and masterful play of tones will describe the artist’s perception of the Venetian decline. The colors are woven in juxtaposition of layers of paint that generate the necessary volume to make it a realistic and spontaneous composition, the water and the cathedral of Venice will stand out above all else. It is a fantastic work created during the visit of Monet to Venice full of movement and quiet in unison.