Claude Monet
French impressionist painter



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Claude Monet
French impressionist painter
Average: 4.8 (4 votes)

Date of Birth

November 14, 1840

Place of Birth

Paris, France

Date of Death

December 05, 1926

Place of Death

Giverny, France

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cschuster's picture

Sr. Contributor

Claude Monet had 99 problems but laying the foundations for Impressionism ain't one.

Claude took seriously the idea of forging a new artistic path that irrevocably changed the world art scene. That is, he had a very high personal standard. He destroyed as many as 500 of his own paintings that simply didn't have the "it" factor. His preferred methods for disposing of inferior works were to burn, kick, and stab the pieces.

Monet and first wife Camille draft-dodged with their young child to London to avoid Monet's conscription in the Franco-Prussian War. This proved to be the smartest thing Monet ever did. Before moving to London, Monet and family lived in squalor. Hardly anyone wanted to buy his fuzzy haystacks or quivering water lilies. His father, disapproving of both Claude's marriage and career, cut him off. Claude had so many money problems, he tried drowning himself in the River Seine. But, in London, he met Paul Durand-Ruel. Claude's bank accounts grew flush as Durand-Ruel got Monet's work in galleries and private collections around the world.

While Camille was on her deathbed, Monet let the family of his friend Ernest Hoschede move into his home. Hoschede was in a financial bind and trying to evade his creditors. He got a job as a journalist in Paris and basically left his wife, Alice, and their kids in Monet's care. After Camille died, Monet decided to turn the domestic awkwardness up to 11 by rebounding with Alice Hoschede. Before rushing to judgment, know that Monet and Alice had the good decency to wait until Ernest died before they married.

Before croaking, Ernest lived permanently in Paris while Monet had his quasi-gentleman's intermission with Alice. One can presume questions about how Monet and Alice met elicited quite the sideways glance. Alice and Monet had a good relationship, except for when she let her crazy hang out. Alice had every image of Camille destroyed. There's a single surviving photograph of Camille, and it exists only because some rando in Holland had it and never told Alice.

Monet spent his life in France, but he may be spending eternity in Cleveland. Monet's ghost was visible on a balcony in the Cleveland Museum of Art  before the opening of an exhibit featuring the Impressionist's work. He looks at the viewer with a great-big-bushy-beard as if asking, "Why couldn't this show have been in San Francisco? Cleveland is balls."

melliot's picture


Claude Monet died of lung cancer.

Parents called him Oscar, but everyone else knew him as Claude.

Was very fond of facial hair, grew a full ZZ Top beard early in life, and maintained it until his death at age 86.

Married one of his models and continued to paint her, even on her deathbed. She died of tuberculosis at age 32.

When he developed cataracts in both eyes he started using more reddish colors. After the cataracts were removed he used more blues again.


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Here is what Wikipedia says about Claude Monet

Oscar-Claude Monet (UK: /ˈmɒn/, US: /mˈn/,French: [klod mɔnɛ]; 14 November 1840 – 5 December 1926) was a French painter, a founder of French Impressionist painting and the most consistent and prolific practitioner of the movement's philosophy of expressing one's perceptions before nature, especially as applied to plein air landscape painting. The term "Impressionism" is derived from the title of his painting Impression, soleil levant (Impression, Sunrise), which was exhibited in 1874 in the first Salon des Refusés (exhibition of rejects) mounted by Monet and his associates as an alternative to the Salon de Paris.

Monet's ambition of documenting the French countryside led him to adopt a method of painting the same scene many times in order to capture the changing of light and the passing of the seasons. From 1883, Monet lived in Giverny, where he purchased a house and property and began a vast landscaping project which included lily ponds that would become the subjects of his best-known works. He began painting the water lilies in 1899, first in vertical views with a Japanese bridge as a central feature, and later in the series of large-scale paintings that occupied him continuously for the next 20 years of his life.

Check out the full Wikipedia article about Claude Monet.