Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Monet's Garden - A Palette of Color

In the old province of Normandy, in Giverny. . .

Monet's Garden Entrance, Giverny by DG Hudson

In Giverny, Impressionist painter Claude Monet's restored house and garden provide a look at the inspiration for many of his paintings--his gardens. In Monet's day, the train was the only access to the village, 80 km, or 50 miles from Paris. In the late 1800s, the village population count in Giverny was about 300. It hasn’t grown that much since then, but the town does see many more tourists. One of reasons is Monet's Garden at Giverny.


Monet's House in Giverny, Autumn, by DG Hudson 

In 1883, middle-aged Claude Monet, his wife Alice, and their eight children from two families settled into a farmhouse here, west of Paris. Monet, at that point a famous artist, would spend 40 years in Giverny, traveling less with each passing year.

Monet lived in the house with its famous pink crushed brick façade from 1883 until his death in 1926. He and many members of his family are interred in the village cemetery. The house has a huge kitchen, and a large bright studio, now used as a gift shop.   Monet’s Japanese prints are on the wall, a ceramic cat sits on a table. No photos are allowed inside the house. The bedrooms are small, but probably normal for the time. The rooms are complete with period furniture, much as they would have been during the time Monet lived here.

Monet's Water Garden, Giverny, Fr. by DG Hudson

The Water Gardens are most peaceful, with the sound of running water and lovely vistas that change with the seasons. We were there in the Autumn when the gardens were lush with growth.

Monet's Garden at Giverny, Real Water Lilies, by DG Hudson


Claude Monet's property at Giverny (house and gardens), left by his son to the Académie des Beaux-Arts in 1966 became a Museum opened to public visit in 1980 after completion of large-scale restoration work.

Are you a gardener? Have you seen Monet's garden? Do you like Impressionist painting?  Please share in the comments.


References:  Giverny Gardens Giverny  Foundation Claude Monet 
Rick Steves on Monet's Garden