Claude Oscar Monet painted Self Portrait I in 1917, during the last phase of his career. Having achieved success decades before by traveling around Europe and the Mediterranean coast while dedicating himself to landscape painting. Monet was one of the leading artists of the Impressionist movement and worked mostly en plein air – in other words; they worked on fast paintings outdoors while observing the fleeting effects of sunlight.
In 1883, the artist found a house in the small town in Giverny, along with his second wife Alice Hoschedé, and their combined children. It was there that he built his famous garden and spent the rest of his days, eventually settling there in 1908 after years of travel. The artist was significantly influenced by the exotic woodcut prints of the Japanese and the cultural baggage that came along with it. The Japanese art put nature as its primary subject and didn’t have any connection to the artistic standards imposed by the Classic Greeks – catching the attention of many modern painters. Their aesthetics were also different than what Europe was accustomed to seeing in Museums and galleries, and the Impressionists incorporated some of the characteristics into their own work. Monet was so passionate about this different culture that he installed a small pond and Japanese bridge in his fantastical garden.
The final stages of Monet’s career are unstable. In 1911, Alice passed away, as well as Jean, Monet’s son. The artist essentially quit painting altogether but ultimately worked almost until his death in 1926. The Impressionist began to develop cataracts, which hindered his vision and changed his way of painting, almost delving into abstraction – an inspiration to the Abstract Expressionists that came decades later. Monet’s brushstrokes became looser and this fit in well with his favorite subject; his water lily pond.
In the oil painting Self Portrait I, Monet painted himself as he truly looked during this time. He looks over his shoulder directly to the viewer. His small, thin glasses are perched on his strong nose. The painter used thick strokes of white and light yellow pigments to represent his long beard. Monet wears a brown jacket and a blue cap, which contrasts with the loosely painted red background. It was rare for Monet to paint self-portraits, as he completed very little of these paintings during his career, including Self Portrait with a Beret.
Important Notes About Your Painting:
If you have any request to alter your reproduction of Self Portrait I, you must email us after placing your order and we'll have an artist contact you. If you have another image of Self Portrait I that you would like the artist to work from, please include it as an attachment. Otherwise, we will reproduce the above image for you exactly as it is.