Recognized as the founder of French Impressionism, Claude Monet is widely respected among art connoisseurs around the world. Monet art is among the most highly valued. Original Monet paintings have sold for more than $50 million dollars. With well over 100 offerings, overstockArt.com has one of the largest collections of high-quality oil reproductions of Claude Monet paintings available anywhere.
One of the founders of the French Impressionist movement was Claude Monet (1840–1926). In fact, the term Impressionism came from Monet’s painting “Impression, Sunrise.” There was a Paris exhibition in 1874 of like-minded painters who were shunned by the official Paris Salon show and frustrated by its politics and narrow vision. This esteemed group included such legends as Renoir, Degas, Cézanne, and Pissarro. An art critic, reviewing the show, coined the term. He titled his article “Exhibition of Impressionists,” based on Monet’s work. Ironically, he did not mean it in a complimentary way. However, the term gained popularity and in future use, took on a far more respectful connotation. Beginning his art training when he was just 11 years old, Monet attended Le Havre secondary school of the arts. The French landscape painter, Eugène Boudin, taught Monet how to use oil paints and special techniques to paint outdoors, which led to his lifelong study of natural landscapes at various times of day and in different lights. Monet’s early childhood homes were in Paris and then Le Havre in Normandy. Upon returning to Paris, he became friends with other young painters who would become part of the Impressionist movement, such as Édouard Manet. While he lived for a time in England (during the Franco–Prussian War) and the Netherlands, in 1872 he settled in Argenteuil, a village on the bank of the Seine River, near Paris, where he created some of his most famous paintings. It also marked the start of his experimentation with variations on a single theme, such as “Le Bassin d’Argenteuil,” which depicted an alley near the Seine in varying light and weather conditions. In later years, Monet and his family purchased a house with orchards and a garden in Giverny, providing him with a wealth of inspirational landscapes for his paintings (one popular example can be seen here: “Garden Path at Giverny”).