Claude Monet’s Gardens

By Judy Berman

Waterlilies in Claude Monet's Gardens
Waterlilies in Claude Monet’s Gardens

Claude Monet’s art studio, and his final haven, was in the open air by a pond filled with cream- and rose-tinged water lilies just minutes from his home in Giverny, France.

This pond was a source of Monet’s inspiration for more than 20 years. “The basic element of the motif is the mirror of water, which changes its appearance every moment,” he said.

Monet had an arched green Japanese foot bridge built overlooking the pond. As you stand on it, it’s easy to envision the Impressionist artist painting on his easel near his broad, square-ended rowing boat.

In 1883, Monet, his wife, Alice, and their eight children moved here. They settled in a big pink stucco house with green shutters. He developed his garden which he said was his most beautiful masterpiece.

This setting changed the focus of Monet’s paintings from everyday slices of life to scenes right outside his door. “He was obsessed by the sunlight dancing across natural scenes, like his garden. But Monet still loved to paint water scenes, so he created a water garden, too.”

No doubt, if Monet walked thru his beloved gardens now, he would grab a paintbrush and try to catch those dappled spots of sunlight on his canvas.

Japanese-style bridge in Claude Monet's Gardens
Japanese-style bridge in Claude Monet’s Gardens

“Color is my day-long obsession, joy and torment.” (Claude Monet)

enjoying the colorful bouquet
enjoying the colorful bouquet

“I am following nature without being able to grasp her, I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers.” (Claude Monet)

Claude Monet's Gardens

“I would like to paint the way a bird sings.” (Claude Monet)

a view of Monet's garden from the upstairs window of his home
a view of Monet’s garden from the upstairs window of his home

“Every day, I discover more and more beautiful things. It’s enough to drive one mad. I have such a desire to do everything. My head is bursting with it.” (Claude Monet)

Poppies outside Eglise Sainte Radegonde - the church where Claude Monet and his family are buried
Poppies outside Eglise Sainte Radegonde – the church where Claude Monet and his family are buried

COPYRIGHT NOTICE: Judy Berman and earthrider, 2011-15. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to (Judy Berman) and (earthrider,, or earthriderdotcom) with appropriate and specific direction to the original

  • Main Photo: Waterlilies in Claude Monet’s Gardens, taken by Vern McGinnis

Source of quotes:

“Monet and the Impressionists for Kids,” by Carol Sabbeth, 2002.

  1. Judy, these are sensational pictures! Monet’s Gardens–and especially his prints of the water lilies–transport me to a cool, calm, colorful world where there are no ringing phones or To Do check-off lists!

    1. Marilyn … Thank you for your posts. Monet’s Gardens are truly a place where you could – and we did – get away from it all. Until you can hop a plane there, I hope these photos will take you there.;-)

  2. Great post, Judy! It was fantastic to see the actual locations that inspired the paintings. As a gardener, I completely understand Monet’s fascination with the beauty of flowers.

  3. Gorgeous and colourful Judy! You obviously went when the garden was in full bloom! I did a post on his water lilies at the Orangerie for Frizz’s A-Z challenge a while back.

    1. Thank you, Madhu. We went in early June and, yes, the garden was in full bloom. I was going to post one of his paintings – a smaller version than the one at the Orangerie – but I decided to just go with the flowers.

      I do remember the photo you took of his painting. Excellent. (Right after my original comment to you, I recalled this – and then rewrote this response to you.)

  4. A living, breathing Art. Nature inspires us everyday. It keeps us hopeful. Calms our soul. Makes our heart smile with pure joy. Beautiful images my friend.

    1. Thank you, Island Traveler. Glad you enjoyed the photos. Nature certainly drew Claude Monet to the canvas. It was a serene setting and calming as we just stood there next to his pond

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