"His canvases of this bridge," according to Richard Thompson, "which from his balcony crossed the river at less of an angle than Waterloo Bridge, so giving a steadier, more stable composition, can play with the dying light of a winter afternoon.... In only 10 of the depictions of Charing Cross Bridge did Monet include a hint of the Embankment beneath his balcony, and these were typically among the less finished canvases. The unanchored scene he favored offered a view with less gravity, lighter... (Monet & Architecture (exhibition catalogue), National Gallery, London, 2018, pp. 176 & 183). The present canvas exudes these lighter, ephemeral qualities, the paint strokes and light illuminations grounded only in the architecture of the horizontal bar of the bridge and its massive vertical pilings supporting it from underneath.
Monet continued to work on the rest of his London canvases back in his studio in Giverny until 1904, when he finally exhibited a selection of them at Galerie Durand-Ruel. Critics heaped praise on the pictures, alleging that Monet's accomplishments rivaled those of J.M.W. Turner, the then-undisputed champion of English landscape painting. According to Georges Lecomte, Monet had never "attained such vaporous subtlety, such powers of abstraction and synthesis." But it was Gustav Kahn who wrote perhaps the most lyrical synopsis in his description of Monet's Charing Cross Bridges: "The Charing Cross Bridge series numbers the fewest paintings. The motif for it is given in an airy vision of the river, where one seems to see light passing, mobile and brief, the fragile shades of dawn. The water is like a mirror on which the vaporous shadows chase and succeed one another—fragile, slow, harmonies, like those of Schumann, if you will, or of Faure... Like another strain in the symphony, the fog blurs a part of the bridge, consumes it, bites the green reflection that cuts the water like a rigid bar. Here the bridges of the bar cast diffuse shadows, like great, moving, trembling leaves on the green water" (G. Kahn, "L'Exposition de Claude Monet" in Gazette des Beaux-Arts, Paris, July 1, 1904, n.p.).
Please call 1-800-555-5555 to order a print catalog for this sale.
Online Registration to Bid is Closed for this Sale. Would you like to watch the live sale?Watch Live Sale