Today is the final day of a hugely successful exhibit tracing the over sixty-year-long career of an artist who was known to his family as Oscar.
We know him as Claude…Claude Monet…and the event at Paris’ Grand Palais celebrates his life (1840-1926) and his accomplishments as one of the founders of French Impressionist painting.
The sign shown above warns those in the line outside the Grand Palais that they still had another six hours before they would be able to even begin viewing the two hundred Monet paintings inside…many from Paris’ Musée d’Orsay (which is currently being renovated), as well as others from collections in Brazil, Russia, the Netherlands, Australia, and the United States. It is the first such gathering of Monet’s art since 1980 and as the exhibit encompasses paintings representing his entire range of work, it was a must-see event. Today is the very last day…the exhibit opened on September 22, 2010 and since then some 889,200 visitors have braved long lines…some waiting for over seven hours! Since this last Friday, it’s been a Monet marathon…with the museum being open 24 hours a day. Tonight at 9pm, the final closing bell will toll.
We lug our cameras around with us at all times, but unfortunately…and understandably…photographs were not allowed to be taken within the exhibit.
Just a brief stroll away is the Musée de l’Orangerie…where eight Monet paintings that were too large to be transported gracefully are on display. No line at the entrance…and not too many people to get in our way as we take…with permission…some images for you to enjoy.
The paintings are enormous…garden scenes…some with nympheas…French for water lily…while others feature saules…French for willow trees. This photo will give you an idea of the size of the paintings. They are all two meters high and range in width from six meters to over twelve meters. Monet first came up with the idea for the series in 1897, with the actual work beginning in 1914 as France was in the midst of World War I. Later, Monet signed an agreement giving the works to France as his way of honoring the fallen French soldiers. The Impressionists strove to capture the effect of light, often painting outdoors using quick brushstrokes and blocks of color; due to their size, these were painted in a specially-created studio at his home in Giverny.
And now I’ll shut up and let you enjoy Oscar Claude Monet’s message for peace…
Reflets d’Arbres…Reflections of Trees
Those are the eight…and for fun, here are a couple of detail views of Reflets Verts:
Note: Speaking of fun…this posting is the first in a series of our own…the “all-work-and-no-play-is-no-fun” series of posts that will be included from time to time…enjoy!