Before the Impressionist movement began, artists would paint in neutral environments, normally an art studio, creating the illusion of a depicted reality using light tricks and mastering their painterly craft. Artists were expected to produce paintings that realistically mimic the world, deceiving the viewer’s eyes into thinking that the painting is reality itself. However, the Impressionists came as a break to this Classical pattern that originated in ancient Greece.
Modern painters began to work outdoors – or en plein air in French – as they were fascinated by the constant change in the natural lighting and seasons. Claude Oscar Monet was one of the leading names in the Impressionist movement. He, like his many of his colleges, was influenced by the changing seasons and how that affected the landscape. They experimented with different color pallets, compositions, as well as brushstrokes.
Monet concluded this series of haystack portrayals between 1890 and 1891, which he found near his studio in Giverny, waking up at dawn and working throughout the day. The painting Grainstacks At The End Of Summer Evening Effect is part of this series. The artist would work on multiple canvases at once, each for a different time of day, as the lighting would change – as well as portraying the changing seasons. Different from many other Impressionists, he concluded most of his work in the studio. He exhibited fifteen artworks from this series in a Parisian gallery called Galerie Durand-Ruel, a mark for his future success.
In Grainstacks At The End Of Summer Evening Effect, Monet used fantastical colors to paint a beautiful sunset landscape. There are two haystacks in the forefront – the one on the right is larger than the other. The Impressionist used visible and spotted brush strokes and a warm color palette. The haystacks are mainly red, pink, and brown, but have some small areas of blue, green, orange, and purple. The ground is also very colorful, with pigments of green, yellow, blue, and violet. The sun is setting on the right side of the canvas with a bright and warm, yellow light, creating blue shadows throughout the artwork. The far background depicts many bushes and other vegetations, as well as hills that stretch on both edges of the horizontal canvas.
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