In 1882, Claude Oscar Monet traveled to a small town called Pourville in North-west France, where he stayed for some months. The artist’s love for nature inspired him to portray many seascapes of the city, which includes the famous The Cliff Walk Pourville, Cliffs And Sailboats At Pourville, The Path At La Cavee Pourville, and Chemin dans les Bles a Pourville, also known as Path in the Wheat at Pourville.
Na enthusiasm can be seen in the works produced during Monet’s stay in Pourville, for the oil paintings burst with vibrant colors of a sunny day. At the time, Monet was in a relationship with Alice Hoschedé, who appears in some seascapes, like The Cliff Walk Pourville. The widow artist officially married Alice after her husband also passed away. In Chemin dans les Bles a Pourville, Monet depicts a typical seascape with an Impressionistic style.
Monet, as his Impressionist colleagues, was inspired by the Japanese art coming to Europe. Hiroshige and Hokusai, as well as other artists, were famous for their artwork done in Ukiyo-e, a Japanese version of the traditional woodcut print technique. These artworks brought themes of exuberant nature and the simplicity of everyday life. The Japanese culture brought an opposition to the modern times that took over Europe, where people began indulging in consumerism. The Impressionists longed for the country-side, and many ended up leaving the big cities in search of a calmer lifestyle. As a result, these modern painters decided to paint in their surroundings, or as they called it en plein air.
The oil painting Chemin dans les Bles a Pourville has a typical composition for a seascape. The forefront shows a sandy path with some wheat in shades of green, ochre, and orange growing adjacent to it. The trail curves to the right, similar to the shape of the water on the shore. The sea in the background was painted with visible brush strokes of blue and turquoise. Some sailboats can be seen in the water, and some cliffs were loosely painted in the far distance, with shades of gray, brown, green, and blue. Monet was able to capture the beautiful texture of the soft, white clouds over light blue expressive strokes over a gray base color.
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