Late Claude Monet at the De Young: 3 Interesting Facts
Oscar-Claude Monet produced well over 2000 paintings throughout his 86 years of life and a very long career as an artist. But it is his late works that he is most remembered by. He had a very hard time dealing with the loss of his son and beloved wife and spent endless days and hours in his French garden, in a town outside of Paris, painting his favorite willow tree and lilies. The exhibit is currently on display at The De Young Museum until May 27th. It features fifty impressionism paintings from artist Claude Monet from 1913 to 1926.
At first glance, the Late Claude Monet exhibition may seem slightly one dimensional – focusing only on the master’s garden that he artfully executes in his signature bluish tones. However, as you start your journey thru the exhibit, you find yourself in tune with his garden with each painting revealing a new perspective of his favorite subject; his garden.
Monet enjoyed his garden more than anything else. The willow tree and lilies were his favorite subjects to paint. He could spend the whole day from first ray of sunshine, until sundown, painting his favorite “Nimpheas”, “Pond with Lilies” and old willows. Monet is said to have strongly disliked painting inside. His mood mirrored gloomy weather as he could do not work in his garden.
It turns out Monet had troubled vision which explains the monotone style of his purplish and greenish paintings. It is the double cataract surgery on his eyes that changed his perception of ultraviolet into bluish and purplish shades. Magically it is those bluish lilies we find so gorgeous and convincing that one can easily forget that they are white! Art curators of the world sure seem to appreciate it, in 2008 one of the late pictures of the series “Pond with
Almost all paintings presented at this exhibit come from private collections and are a real treat for anyone in San Francisco to see. I visited the exhibit with my kids and parents and everyone enjoyed this rare treat.
“Monet: The Late Years”: 9:30 a.m.-5:15 p.m., Tuesday-Sunday. Saturday, Feb. 16-May 27. $20-$35. De Young Museum, Golden Gate Park, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, S.F. 415-750-3600. http://deyoung.famsf.org