Impressionist & Modern Art

Everybody's Talking About... Monet & Architecture at the National Gallery

By Martin Dean

L overs of Impressionism’s founding father, Claude Monet, are eagerly awaiting the upcoming Monet & Architecture exhibition which opens at the National Gallery in London on 9 April and runs until 29 July.

Monet lovers should also take note that Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art evening sale on 14 May will see an important late Monet, Matinée sur la Seine, go on sale in New York.

CLAUDE MONET, THE RUE MONTORGUEIL, PARIS. THE NATIONAL HOLIDAY OF 30 JUNE, 1878 (LA RUE MONTORGUEIL, PARIS. FÊTE DU 30 JUIN, 1878) © MUSÉE D'ORSAY, DIST. RMN-GRAND PALAIS / PATRICE SCHMIDT.

While Monet is most readily associated with his famous landscape paintings, the National Gallery exhibition will include more than 75 works which explore the artist’s widely varying studies of buildings. It brings together some of his earliest works from the mid 1860s, and travels with him through the towns and cities of Europe where he lived and worked throughout his life.

CLAUDE MONET, THE QUAI DU LOUVRE (LE QUAI DU LOUVRE), 1867 © COLLECTION GEMEENTEMUSEUM DEN HAAG.

In paintings like the Quai du Louvre (1867) we see the landmarks of Paris he painted as a young artist while exhibiting in the early Impressionist shows.

CLAUDE MONET, WINDMILLS NEAR ZAANDAM (MOULINS PRÈS ZAANDAM), 1871 © VAN GOGH MUSEUM (VINCENT VAN GOGH FOUNDATION), AMSTERDAM.

We see the windmills of the Netherlands, where he moved in 1871, his famous Rouen Cathedrals, all the way though to London’s riverside landmarks in works like Thames Below Westminster (1871) and the monumental edifices of Venice, painted towards the end of his life.

CLAUDE MONET, THE GRAND CANAL (LE GRAND CANAL), 1908 © FINE ARTS MUSEUMS OF SAN FRANCISCO.

For lovers of Monet, it’s a unique opportunity to see a collection of works that have never shared a gallery before, and to see many of his great ‘series’ paintings re-united.

CLAUDE MONET, MATINÉE SUR LA SEINE . ESTIMATE: $18,000,000–25,000,000.

A compelling and poignant late work by a true master, Monet's Matinée sur la Seine, which will be offered in the Impressionist and Modern Art evening sale in New York on 14 May, is part of a series of more than twenty canvases the artist completed between 1896 and 1897 near his home in Giverny. Painted from a studio boat anchored in the middle of the Seine, the works are among Monet’s last depictions of the river that had provided him with so much inspiration. 

CLICK HERE to view the full sale catalogue.

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