For lovers of art, especially that by a Claude Monet, 1840-1926, the National Gallery has an exhibition featuring more than 70 of the artist’s works.
Monet and Architecture features his oil paintings of buildings, with only five owned by the National, fifteen coming from private collections and 57 from other museums and galleries around the world. In particular there are a large number painted in villages and cities in France including Rouen (some of the famous cathedral series) Le Havre, Honfleur, Trouville, Sainte-Adresse, Varengville, Dieppe, Giverny, Vetheuil, Argenteuil, Antibes and Paris (Paris streets, bridges and some of the Gare Saint-Lazare series) Also represented are works painted in Venice, Bordighera and Dolceaqua in Italy and London, where he had a room at the Savoy Hotel and captured views of Waterloo and Charing Cross bridges and, from the newly-built St Thomas’s Hospital, our Houses of Parliament, sometimes veiled in the infamous and lethal polluting fog that fascinated Monet artistically.
Another Monet worth seeking out from the permanent collection whilst at the National is his 1870 The Beach at Trouville, with two ladies in the foreground said to be Mont’s wife Camille and Eugene Boudin, wife of the painter whose beach scenes influenced Monet. Unique about this work are the grains of sand still clinging to the paint, the proof that it really was painted at least partly on the beach.
Monet and Architecture runs till July 29, price £18.