In 1883, Claude Monet and his family settled at Giverny in a large house on a plot of over a hectare. Ten years later, he enlarged it by digging the waterlily pond. Although an excellent gardener, he remained a painter first and foremost, and made the grounds a painting "straight from nature". He chose the flowerbeds in the same way that he put colours on his palette. Composing a space full of subtle shades, James Priest, the head gardener, works to reproduce these varied, radiant ambiances by referring to the artist’s works: blue and pink dominate in April, lilac and white in May, pink and mauve in June, pink and red at the beginning of July. Changing colour with each season, the garden brings out the subtle play of light inseparable from Impressionism.
The rowing boat, still tied up on the pond’s edge, enabled Monet to move among the waterlilies and paint them. In these works, space escapes perspective and the subject disappears, leaving the field open to painting in its purest form. The artist passed his passion for canoeing and fishing on to his step-daughters. One of them, Blanche, the daughter of Alice Raingo and Ernest Hoschedé, had asserted her talent when she was 11, and began to learn painting from the master in his studio.
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The Louvre is thinking big. With its new spaces dedicated to art from Louis XIV to Marie-Antoinette, the Parisian Museum provides a lesson on style, paying splendid homage to the French way of life and expertise. From the strong hues of the absolute rule of the Sun King to the livelier, more varied colours of the "Beloved's" reign and the softer tones of his successor's times, the Musée du Louvre’s new rooms dedicated to the arts of three Louis of France lack neither panache nor typically French rigour as far as museography is concerned.…
While the capital takes its summer break, auctions wend their way to the seaside. Monaco stages its traditional jewellery, vintage and modern/contemporary art sales, and Deauville a number of events focusing on the horse.
Asian week produced some substantial results, particularly with Chinese objects; also some excellent bids for ethnic and contemporary art.
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