Saturday, September 5, 2020

Monet Before MONET

Before Monet became Claude Monet, the Father of Impressionism, around the age of 32, he spent much of his time called by his given name "Oscar," rebellious, impoverished and painting some of my favorites of all his paintings.  Like:

The ENORMOUS (13' x 19/5) and unfinished Luncheon on the Grass, 1865
(This is a smaller version, probably a study, bought directly from Monet by the incredible Russian collector, Sergei, Shchukin, and now in the Pushkin Museum, Moscow

fragment from Luncheon on the Grass

And then when he couldn't finish Luncheon on the Grass in time for the Salon, he painted:
Camille, or Woman in a Green Dress, 1866
In Four days!  AND it was accepted by the picky, picky salon and received great admiration.  He was 26.

At his father's house and probably hoping (to no avail) for some financial help, he painted his father in his garden:

Adolphe Monet Reading in the Garden,  1866

And in the country, painting outdoors and freezing, he was the first painter to correctly capture snow:
The wonderful, wonderful The Magpie, 1868-1869

There are many more favorites from Monet's early years, perhaps more of them than his  later Impressionist paintings so adored by the public.  Perhaps...

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