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The museum secret of Monet

An exhibition in Paris brought together the private collection of the painter, in which were more than a hundred works of Renoir, Cézanne, Pissarro or Delacroix

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The museum secret of Monet

An exhibition in Paris brought toger private collection of painter, in which were more than a hundred works of Renoir, Cézanne, Pissarro or Delacroix


  • Monet in first person
  • 7.35, time impressionist

Claude Monet, collecting art was an intimate activity, and almost clandestine. Throughout his life, French master came to accumulate many signed works by his contemporaries, but not taught to almost anyone, nor spoke never of m. Only broke silence shortly before his death. In 1924, two years before his death, confessed in a conversation with writer Marcel Tendron, who was working on a book about impressionist painter. “I also have my collection. For a long time I had to be content with seeing pictures of this step because I could not buy m. But I am a selfish. My collection is just for me... and for some friends. I keep it in my room, around my bed,” said painter.

An exhibition at Museum Marmottan Paris delves now in this unfamiliar appearance of his biography. Monet collector, which opens this Thursday and will remain open until 14th of January, has managed to restore a good part of this secret collection, which concentrated canvases of great authors such as Delacroix, Manet, Caillebotte, Morisot, Cézanne or Renoir. To gar se works, today cotizadísimas and scattered throughout world, has been an arduous task. “It has been almost a police investigation,” says head curator of museum, Marianne Mathieu. “After painter's death, his collection was dismembered. Many of paintings belonged to were sold by his son.” The eldest son of painter, Michel, had a costly passion for wildlife safaris and took advantage of large pictorial inheritance that he bequead to his far for sufragarla.

if that weren't enough, list of works that formed part of collection of Monet disappeared during a bombing raid in Second World War. To organize shows, had to start almost from scratch. “We review results from previous inventories, private correspondence, auction catalogues, and articles in press,” explains commissioner. Mathieu takes more than three years charting a new inventory, locating works in question and dispose of loans that many were almost impossible. Managed to close a list of 125 works, now scattered in public and private collections. The show has managed to concentrate 77 of m. Come from lenders such as Orsay Museum, National Gallery in Washington, Moma and Metropolitan in New York. The Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco has sent to Paris The algerian, exuberant portrait of Renoir. For its part, Museum of Art of Sao Paulo agreed to cede The black Scipio, anor gorgeous oil painting of Cézanne.

Back to The Havre

The exhibition in Paris coincides with anor exhibition, which opened this week in Havre, city where Monet lived from age of 5 years, which revolves around Print, rising sun, canvas of 1872 which gave name to impressionist movement. This is first time that box, which represents port of The Havre, back to this French city. The Museum Marmottan, custodian of work, has agreed to deliver on occasion of its 500th anniversary of The Havre. The box can be visited only during a month, until 8 of October, in Museum of Modern Art André Malraux (Muma) of city, stuck on normandy coast. The exhibition proposes a dialogue with thirty sunsets more, painted by artists like Turner, Boudin, Vallotton and Raoul Dufy.

The exhibition also brings toger works that, until now, I was unaware that y were part of collection of Monet. For example, a small Rodin sculpture found in a French private collection, which is on display now in public for first time. On reverse, with a dedication that confirms its provenance: “The great master Monet. Your friend, Rodin”. The makers of shows just regret not having been able to collect a cézanne additional, as a Boy with red vest, imprestable from ft and reappearance in 2010.

The journey reflects different stages that characterize trajectory of possessor of se pictures, which were selected discretely in auctions and classrooms. Never was pushing for m: he preferred to send to an intermediary. In spite of his intimate relations with many of se painters, nor is it addressed directly to m to get boxes. I'd rar spend by merchants, despite additional costs involved. “It was a way to separate private dimension and professional,” explains Mathieu. After hung in all corners of your house in Giverny. With exception of his studio, a sanctuary in which it was better not to run risk of interference.

Gifts and exchanges

The first rooms to collect a series of portraits of family Monet by Manet, Renoir or Carolus-Duran, who immortalizes with a surprising military uniform. They are, in ir majority, gifts and exchanges that painters were doing to each or, a common practice in circle of impressionist. Caillebotte gave him a sketch of a Street in Paris, rainy wear, one of his masterpieces. In exchange for a loan to buy your home, Pissarro gave him with his Peasant women planting stakes, by which Monet was always fascinated. “The box is inscribed in post-impressionism and demonstrates gradual opening of Monet to styles that you despised in your youth, as well as his appreciation late in pointillism of Signac,” says curator.

When he had sufficient means to begin to buy works, is decided by your teachers: watercolours from romantic Delacroix, but also a small format of Jongkin and Boudin, considered precursors of impressionism for having been first to paint outdoors. After, it focused on Renoir and Cézanne. “In se works look for a complementary look. Purchase boxes of those who have same concerns of painting, although y find different solutions to yours. Throughout collection re is not a single work that seems to what makes a Monet,” says Mathieu. However, your curiosity will not go beyond a reasonable radius. Or cubism or fauvism, and even less to dadaism, which will mark progress towards avant-garde, are reflect in this collection.


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