Claude Oscar Monet 1840 - 1926    


Claude Monet was born in Paris in 1840.

His family moved to the port town of Le Havre when he was five years old. He developed a decent reputation in school for his caricatures, from which he earned his early revenue: He was already commissioned for his work by the age of fifteen.

In 1856, Monet met Eugene Boudin, a painter who found delight in the idea of painting outdoors and encouraged Monet to paint outdoor scenes.

In 1859, Monet left his hometown for Paris. There, Monet joined the studio of Charles Gleyre, who was a successful Salon painter but neither a professor in school nor a member of the Acadamy. It was in the studio that Monet met his very close friends: Bazille, Renoir, and Sisley.

In the 1870s Monet and Renoir broke the tradition of their predecessor's painting and created the broken color technique of impressions: creating a scene of light and atmosphere. Monet was especially fascinated with the reflections of water, the light of the sun, and most importantly, with the immediate and present moment.

In 1890, he began creating paintings in series, depicting the same subject under various conditions of weather and light and at different times of the day. He bought a house at Giverny and for his next forty years, he worked on paintings of his cultivated water-lily garden. The term "Impressionism" was actually named after one of his paintings, "Impression: Sunrise" which received a hostile critique in 1874.

Monet died at Giverny in 1926, at the age of 86.

Works by Claude Monet featured on this website:

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