His long stay in Venice in the fall of 1908 was a continuous working session during which the artist realized 37 oil paintings divided into several themes. Upon his return to Paris, Bernheim-Jeune acquired 28 of these pieces that remained in the artist's studio for the finishing touches.
In 1912, everything is ready. The exhibition of the views of Venice by Monet at the Galerie Bernheim-Jeune enchants the most demanding visitors.
From morning to twilight, Monet had observed all the color variations introduced by the play of the sunlight through the fog. His views of the Palazzo Ducale taken from San Giorgio Maggiore are topographically correct but the details are embedded in a beautiful diffused light that encompasses the monuments and their reflections. The foreground of a pontoon is similarly stripped of details to only serve for opening the perspective.
One of these paintings is at the MET and another one at the Guggenheim Museum. Sotheby's sells on February 3 in London another example of the same theme, which is probably the closest to the original ideas of Impressionism and had been included in the exhibition of 1912. This oil on canvas 65 x 100 cm is estimated £ 12M, lot 23.
Monet is not the first artist to express the ethereal light of Venice. The contribution of his art compared to Turner's views is the fact that Monet, only interested in the atmosphere, removes any anecdotal animation. The gondola that slides in front of the Piazza serves only to underline a strong point of the composition.
SOLD for £ 11.6M including premium