Claude Monet

Self Portrait with Beret (1886) by Claude Monet, in a Private Collection (Photo by unknown)
Self Portrait with Beret (1886) by Claude Monet, in a Private Collection
Self Portrait with Beret (1886) by Claude Monet, in a Private Collection, Claude Monet, General (Photo by unknown)
Portrait of Claude Monet in 1899 by Nadar, Claude Monet, General (Photo by Nadar)
Coquelicots (Poppies), aka La promenade (1873) by Claude Monet, in the Musée d'Orsay, Paris, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée d
Study of a Figure Outdoors: Woman with a Parasol, facing left (1886) by Claude Monet, in the Musée d'Orsay, Paris, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée d
Water Lilies and Japanese Bridge (1897–99) by Claude Monet, in the Princeton University Art Museum, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Princeton University Art Museum)
The Japanese Footbridge (1920–22) by Claude Monet, in the Museum of Modern Art, New York, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of MoMA)
Impression, soleil levant (Impression Sunrise) (1872) by Claude Monet—the painting that inadvertently lent its name to the "Impressionism" movement—in the Musée Marmottan Monet, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée Marmottan Monet)
La Cathédrale de Rouen, Le portail et la tour Saint-Romain, plein soleil ; harmonie bleue et or (1892–93) by Claude Monet, in the Musée d'Orsay, Paris, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée d
Rouen Cathedral. Facade (Sunset) (1892–94) by Claude Monet, in the Musée Marmottan Monet, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée Marmottan Monet)
London, Houses of Parliament. The Sun Shining through the Fog (1904) by Claude Monet, in the Musée d'Orsay, Paris, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée d
Déjeuner sur l'herbe (1865–66) by Claude Monet, in the Musée d'Orsay, Paris, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Musée d
La Grenouillère (1869) by Claude Monet, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art)
Camille, Monet's wife (1866) by Claude Monet, in the Kunsthalle Bremen, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of the Kunsthalle Bremen)
Haystacks: Snow Effect (1891) by Claude Monet, in the Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh, Claude Monet, General (Photo courtesy of Scottish National Gallery)

The king of the Impressionist movement

The Impressionist movement officially began with an 1874 exhibition in Paris in which French painter Claude Monet (1840-1926) exhibited his loose, Turner-inspired Impression, Sunrise (in the Musée Marmottan), which one critic picked to lambaste the whole exhibition, deriding it all as "Impressionist."

Far from being insulted, the non-establishment artists in the show adopted the word for their exhibits though the 1880s.

Monet is famous for his garden scenes and his waterlillies, the way he played with light and suggested its play off of objects—trees, dresses, and cathedral facades alike—with just daubs of loosly applied color. 

Great Monet quotes

  • One day Boudin said to me, "Learn to draw well and appreciate the sea, the light, the blue sky." I took his advice.
  • I would like to paint the way a bird sings.
  • I didn't become an impressionist. As long as I can remember I always have been one.
  • Since the appearance of impressionism, the official salons, which used to be brown, have become blue, green and red.
  • I would advise young artists... to paint as they can, as long as they can, without being afraid of painting badly.
  • Take clear water with grass waving at the bottom. It's wonderful to look at, but to try to paint it is enough to make one insane.
  • For me, a landscape does not exist in its own right, since its appearance changes at any moment.
  • I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers.
  • Lots of people will protest that it's quite unreal and that I'm out of my mind, but that's just too bad.
  • Paint what you really see, not what you think you ought to see; not the object isolated as in a test tube, but the object enveloped in sunlight and atmosphere, with the blue dome of Heaven reflected in the shadows. 
  • The effect of sincerity is to give one's work the character of a protest. The painter being concerned only with conveying his impression, simply seeks to be himself and no one else.
  • Color is my day-long obsession, joy and torment.
  • It really is appallingly difficult to do something which is complete in every respect, and I think most people are content with mere approximations. Well, my dear friend, I intend to battle on, scrape off and start again...
  • People discuss my art and pretend to understand as if it were necessary to understand, when it's simply necessary to love.
  • I've done what I could as a painter and that seems to me to be sufficient. I don't want to be compared to the great masters of the past, and my painting is open to criticism; that's enough.

Selected works by Claude Monet in England


Poplars on the River Epte (1890–91) by Claude Monet in the Tate Britain, London

Autumn Effect at Argenteuil (1873) by Claude Monet in the Courtauld Gallery, London

The Water-Lily Pond (1899) by Claude Monet (1840–1926) in the National Gallery, London

The Thames at Westminster 1871 Westminster (1871) by Claude Monet (1840–1926) in the National Gallery, London

Water-Lilies, Setting Sun (1907) by Claude Monet (1840–1926) in the National Gallery, London

Water-Lilies (1916) by Claude Monet in the National Gallery, London

Where to find works by Claude Monet in England