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Claude Monet

A Cliff at Pourville in the Morning


Claude Monet
Paris 1840 – Giverny 1926


A Cliff at Pourville in the Morning




Oil on canvas


65.8 x 100.5 cm


Purchase, John W. Tempest Fund, inv. 1918.126


Western Art

Claude Monet was one of the most important Impressionist painters. It was in fact one of his paintings, Impression, Sunrise of 1872 that inspired the critic Louis Leroy to label Monet and his fellow painters (Camille Pissarro and Alfred Sisley, among others) Impressionists. In the winter of 1897, Monet resided on the Normandy coast. During previous sojourns in the early 1880s, he had painted varied motifs; this time, he produced series, working on several canvases at once, at various times of day. He painted directly from nature, sheltered from the wind and exhilarated by the movement of the sea. Critic Gustave Geffroy, Monet’s biographer, wrote: “Vast skies rise from the water and breathe in the ocean mass: it is an exchange, a commingling, that results in an admirable unity.” He concludes his description of Monet’s pioneering technique as follows: “No one had yet perceived this distant painting, as if ‘within,’ that expresses the mists wandering on the cliffs of Dieppe, the cool and peaceful quiet of solitude.”

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