Philadelphia Museum of Art Biography: Monet



Reagan Wish Staff Writer

With the dreary, biting days of winter finally drawing to a close, everything seems to be getting better. The sunshine lasts longer and so does my good mood. The skies are brighter and so are people’s smiles. All these goofy, good-mood sentiments come with the good weather.  Claude Monet (as the sensitive-artist type he most likely was) probably felt the same way about an approaching summertime. After all, the impressionist style is all about capturing a feeling. This painting—Marine View with a Sunset—gives off the feeling of the calm, reassuring warmth of a summer night. 

If you think that last sentence was ridiculous, that’s fair—it’s my inner art nerd coming out, gassed up by warm weather. Look at the colors instead and take a second to enjoy the semi-trippy kaleidoscope effect Monet painted on the water and in the sky. The impressionists were great for creating sensations with the painting and then letting the viewer fill in the specifics—so let your mind wander! Try to imagine what Monet was seeing and feeling and hearing when he painted this, as he and his friends were known for setting up wherever they felt like it and just painting outdoors. Which, although it seems pretty chill to us today, was a totally radical thing to do back then. 

Do you know any places like this in real life? If you do, let me know, because I want to visit them this summer—and maybe make some impressionist art of my own! If you don’t, you can go enjoy Monet’s version of the perfect summer night in Gallery 152 on the first floor of the PMA.