Claude Monet's love affair with nature

Claude Monet, one of the most famous painter in the history of art, known best as the father of Impressionism had a fanatical fascination for landscapes. His style of capturing light and natural forms laid the foundation of the revolutionary art movement- impressionism. All his life he experimented with variations of color, passing effect of light and reflection.

Even as a student in the art academy, Monet never liked being confined to the classrooms. He was more interested in exploring and capturing Mother Nature with his paints on the canvas. His avant-garde technique of loose and short brushstrokes captured the essence and impression of the landscape’s. The uniquely unfinished look of his artwork is what ended the realistic classical art era and paved the way for a new art movement- impressionism. Shown below are some of his most popular paintings.

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Impression- Sunrise (shown above) was one of the paintings displayed in the first art exhibition held by all the impressionist artists (Manet, Renoir, Degas, Monet etc) the artwork coined the word impressionism. It was made by the artist within 40 minutes. The critics used the title of the painting to phrase the exhibition as-“The Exhibition of the Impressionists" hence accidentally defining the new art movement.

The town of Argenteuill with its scenic appeal lured the artist in to making some of the most exquisite and groundbreaking paintings. Shown below are a few of his artworks which reflected some of Argenteuil’s most picturesque view’s, one of them being the artists own garden in Argenteuil.

The Bridge at Argenteuil

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Bassin d'Argenteuil

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The Artist's Garden in Argenteuil

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Monet made a series of remarkable paintings of the celebrated Poppies at Argenteuil. Three of which are shown below.

Poppy Field (Mrs. Monet and her son in the background)

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Poppy Field in a Hollow

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Poppy Field

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Woman with a Parasol (Mrs Monet and their son) was painted in a single session probably within few hours, the impulsiveness is clearly visible with the bold and dynamic strokes of multiple shades. The subject of the painting is casual, it depicts a relaxed family outing on a sunny, fair weather day. Upwards perspective, windy atmosphere and the juxtaposition of Mrs Monet with her partly visible son, adds a sense of amazing depth.

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Some of Monet’s monumental coastal landscapes (shown below) have received much appreciation by art historians and collectors. The illustrative and flowy effect in his seascape’s is depicted with great dexterity by the artist, using his signature style of energetic, animated and free flowing brushstrokes.

Vétheuil

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The Beach at Sainte Adresse

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French Port of Le Havre

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Three Fishing Boats

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Flower Beds at Vétheuil (shown below) is one of the artworks made by Monet during his stay in the town of Vétheuil, along the Seine. The uniqueness of this artwork is the usage of complementary colors applied in a thick and fragmentary manner, adding a spirited commotion to the painting.

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Unlike other artist of that time Monet composed artworks with industrial subjects and manmade green belts with much grace and artistry. Below is one of the finest example of the same. This bold choice marked his artworks with originality and gave his paintings a very contemporary look.

Train in the Countryside

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Monets garden in Givery was a major source of inspiration for his most notable paintings that captured the quintessential characteristics of impressionism. The water lilies series that he made during this phase are considered to be his most treasured masterpieces. Often, a single spot was made by him on numerous canvasses under different lighting and weather conditions. The artworks when placed together depict the changing hues and shades with a silky flow. Shown below are two of his paintings from the Water Lilies series.

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The Japanese Footbridge and the Water Lily Pool

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