Claude Oscar Monet painted the landscape The Tulleries in Paris. The Tulleries Palace was located next to the Seine river – a subject portrayed by many Impressionists and Post-Impressionists. The Imperial and Royal Palace was also represented in Camille Pissarro’s View of the Tulleries: Morning.
Monet used a high viewpoint to depict the surroundings of the French Palace – an unusual perspective. There are dark brown and green bushes in the forefront, as well as tall trees with ochre-colored leaves. Behind the trees, a circular fountain is portrayed with light blue reflex. The garden around the fountain is formed with green grass and paths of light brown walkways. The background shows the architecture of the palace and is carefully painted, as Monet depicts many other buildings in the faraway horizon.
During the same year Monet painted The Tulleries, he was commissioned by Ernst Hoschedé to paint many decorative panels for his country home. Ernst was a wealthy businessman and enjoyed purchasing Impressionist paintings. The artist and his wife helped the family in times of bankruptcy, and they all lived together in Véthueil to share resources. Monet ended up becoming very close to the Hoschedé family, particularly the children and their mother, Alice. After Camille’s tragic death in 1879 and the separation of the Hoschedés, Monet and Alice got married. During his time living in Véthueil, the artist was always working, despite the troubles that his family went through with his wife’s declining health.
As an Impressionists, Monet had a great passion observing and portraying nature. Many times, the group of artists would get together to paint en plein air, meaning they worked outside. The primary concern was capturing the fleeting effects of natural sunlight on a landscape, painting with fast and expressive brushstrokes. Monet would sometimes work on many paintings at once, switching from one to the next as the sun’s position changed. Often, the artist would work en plein air but concluded many paintings in his studio – causing criticism from his fellow Impressionists.
The exotic Japanese woodcut prints inspired modern painters for its aesthetic values and the themes approached by the artists. Artists like Hokusai perfected a technique similar to traditional woodcut prints, but works watercolor and enables the use of many colors per woodcut, called Ukiyo-e. With vibrant pigments, these Asian artists depicted scenes of nature and its relationship with humankind, as well as ordinary subjects.
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