Claude Monet was a famous French painter and a leading figure in the Impressionist movement. He was born on November 14, 1840, in Paris, France, and died on December 5, 1926, in Giverny, France. Monet’s most famous works depict the beauty of nature, particularly water lilies, gardens, and landscapes.
Monet was part of a close-knit group of artists known as the Impressionists. Some of his close friends in the group included Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Edgar Degas, Camille Pissarro, Berthe Morisot, John Singer Sergeant. They often worked and exhibited together and shared a fascination with the effects of light and color on the natural world.
Monet’s family was also a significant part of his life and work. He had two sons with his first wife, Camille Doncieux, who often appeared as a subject in his paintings. After Camille’s death, Monet married Alice Hoschedé. She had previously been married to Ernest Hoschedé. A friend and supporter of the Impressionist group, and they had six children together.
Monet’s extended family also played a role in his artistic career. His brother, Leon Monet, managed his finances and helped him gain recognition in the art world. Monet’s daughter -in-law and stepdaughter was, Blanche Hoschedé, was also a painter and often worked alongside Monet.
Photograph in Claude Monet’s Third studio, [ summer 1922]
Size: 18 x 24 cm
Gelatin silver photograph
Dated: July 1922
Provenance: George Rinhart’s collection most likely
An Autograph from Claude Monet:
« Croyez-moi votre bien dévoué Claude Monet »
Translation: “Believe me your very devoted Claude Monet”
George Rinhart is a photographer known primarily known for his photographs of Americana and historic sites. Back of the photograph, handwriting in Pencil by George Rinhart “Monsieur Claude Monet in his studio….1922 surrounded by the nineteen Nympheas panels of which he has made a present to the nation.” From left to right Mrs. Monet’s daughter in law, Mme Monet [Blanche Hoschedé Monet], Mr. Butler [Theodore Earl Butler], Miss Butler [lilly Butler; Theodore Earl
Butler’s daughter], Mr. Claude Monet, Miss Marguerite Namara, Mr. Harry B. Lachman, Mrs. Butler [Marthe Butler born Hoschedé].”
The photograph captures a moment in Claude Monet’s third studio in July of 1922. This photograph is a rare window into
the work of one of the most renowned artists. The photograph provides a glimpse into Monet’s personal and artistic life,
showing him in his studio surrounded by his loves one and his work.
Claude Monet’s family included his stepdaughter in law and daughter in law, Blanche Hoschedé Monet, and Theodore Earl
Butler’s stepson in law. Marguerite Namara, an American soprano, and opera singer visited Claude Monet. She traveled to Europe several times during her career. She performed in London and Paris and appeared in several European operas. Marguerite Namara was introduced to Claude Monet by Henry Lachman, a British-American painter, set designer, and film director. He is known for his work in the film industry, where he worked as a set designer and director in Hollywood during the 1920s and 1930s. He also worked as a painter, and was influenced by the Impressionist style of Claude Monet Marguerite Namara later remembered that Monet sang a duet with her from Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro. Marguerite Namara visits Monet and gives a piano recital in Claude Monet’s third studio in July of July of 1922i. It shows the influence of music in Claude Monet’s life.
Theodore Earl Butler (who married two of Claude Monet’s stepdaughters) helped Marguerite Namara to bring a piano in the studio. Marguerite Namara later remembered that Monet once came over to me at the piano and drew up his famous armchair and sat down. “He asked me if I knew the soprano-baritone duet from Le nozze di Figaro of Mozart. … I did, and we went right into it. We sang the entire thing, including the recitative; he knew all the words. His voice was not a very beautiful sound, but it was on pitch and full of vitality and energy just like himself.” Marguerite Namara dedicated her photograph to Claude Monet. “A vous …Très grand et Cher Maître in the happiest recollection of my life…..to have met you and to have chantait pour vous”. Claude Monet in a letter to Henry Lachman said “Madame Tamara avec notre bon souvenir et croyez à mes meilleurs sentiments. [ Tamara with our good memory and believe in my best feelings.]
The photograph in the background likely shows panels paintings by Claude Monet’s “Water Lilies” series (or “Nymphéas” in French.) Claude Monet donated to the state of France in April of 1922. The donation was made possible through Monet’s friendship with Georges Clemenceau, who was a prominent political figure in France at the time. Despite some criticism of the donation, the state accepted the gift, and the panel paintings were displayed in the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris with the precious help of Blanche Hoschedé. The “Water Lilies” series is considered one of Monet’s most iconic and significant works and is still widely admired and studied today.
One of the conditions set by Claude Monet for his donation of the “Water Lilies” series to the state of France was that the
paintings be kept together and displayed in a specific way that would allow for the best viewing experience for the audience.
Monet himself helped to design the special oval rooms in the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris, where the paintings were to be
displayed, with the goal of creating an immersive experience for the viewer. Claude Monet passed away in December
1926, before the final installation of his “Water Lilies” series at the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris was completed.
The photograph took place after the recital in Claude Monet’s studio. Claude Monet would use the phrase “votre bien dévoué” (which translates to “yours faithfully” in
English) in his autographs when giving recognition to those with whom he had only professional relationships. This is a common practice among artists as they may use different forms of signatures or inscriptions depending on the context and nature of
their relationship with the recipient.
« Aux hommes avec lesquels Monet n’entretient que des relations professionnelles » il écrit “ votre bien dévoué “ Karen Leduc To the men with whom Monet has only professional relations, he writes “yours faithfully”, Karen Leduc