Claude Monet Biography for Kids
Bon jour! I am Claude Monet. This is the Claude Monet biography for kids. I am from the late 1800s and early 1900s in France.
There has been an interesting movement in art going on in France called the Impressionist Movement, and I am one of the main artists of Impressionism. I was born in 1840 in Paris, France. I knew I wanted to be an artist from an early age, though my father wanted me to join the family business of grocery sales and supplying ships.
I was able to attend the school of the arts in Les Havre, where my family had moved. I used to draw caricatures…
until I met a local artist, Eugene Boudin…
who became my mentor and encouraged me to try painting landscapes “en plein air”, or as you say, in the open air.
So I stopped drawing the caricatures and instead began to paint landscapes.
I like the natural world…
and I got tired of imitating the Old Masters. Some of my friends – you know, Renoir,
and Bazille –
and I got tired of the colors and styles of classical art and when the Salon (you know, the French Art Show) started rejecting our paintings for display, we made our own exhibitions. Our Impressionist Exhibitions started in 1874 and continued for about 20 years. One critic called our works “impressionism” because he thought our art works seemed more like sketches than finished paintings.
But we liked his term “impressionism”. Oui, oui, we like to paint natural scenes using strong colors and short brushstrokes and capture the natural light, sometimes making many paintings of the same scene at different times and in varying degrees of light to create an impression, like my paintings of grainstacks.
Sometimes I have painted luncheon parties…
or train stations…
But my favorite place to paint is in my garden, first in Argenteuil and later in Giverny.
In my garden in Giverny, I made a series of paintings of Water Lilies. It’s so hard to choose which ones to show you, so here are just a few:
France was my home, but I did live in a few other places or travel. I spent time in Holland, painting flowers and windmills.
I also lived in London during the Franco-Prussian War and painted the Houses of Parliament…
and the Waterloo Bridge among other things.
Later, my second wife, Alice, and I visited Venice, Italy.
While I loved the “en plein air” or in open air and natural light of impressionism, I did paint a few portraits. My first wife Camille was often a model for me as well as my children.
But even my portraits often contain landscapes and natural light.
Les enfants (children), here is what you need to remember about me. I am Claude Monet, the French Impressionist, who lived in the late 1800s into the early 1900s, and I am known for natural scenes in natural light and use of quick brush strokes.
Check out the video too!
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