|The Claude Monet Foundation at Giverny
Telephone: (++ 33) 02 32 51 28 21
Curator: M. Gérard Van Der Kemp
General Secretary: Mme Claudette Lindsey
In 1883 Claude Monet moved to Giverny, a small
village in the Département of the Eure, in Normandy.
Under the spell of the poetic setting, the Impressionist master
acquired a handsome residence with grounds he laid out as a
kind of "painting made with nature". In front of the
house and the new studios he had built - notably the extensive
Waterlily Studio - were the rectilinear "Clos Normand",
where airy vaults of plants surrounded sumptuous clumps of shrubs;
the luxuriant flowerbeds that inspired this "flower-mad"
painter; and, lower down, the water garden formed by a branch
of the Epte, with its famed Japanese bridge, weeping willows,
wisteria, azaleas and pond: a tableau that gave birth to the
pictorial world of Monet's famed Waterlilies.
In 1966 M. Michel Monet decided that the house,
its collections and its grounds should become part of the Académie
des Beaux-Arts' heritage. The master's carefully-planned garden
having gradually become overgrown, the Académie, in conjunction
with the Département's authorities and French and American
patrons, embarked on the restoration programme whose success
is now generally acknowledged.
Officially opened in 1980, the Giverny property
gives the public access to Monet's everyday world, his collection
of Japanese prints, his furniture, his studios - and above all
the garden and surrounding countryside, the inspiration for
the famous "series" that play such a part in the painter's
Giverny now contributes to the Académie's role as patron, with
the opening of residential studios for young French and foreign students
finding inspiration in Monet's work; be they painters, art historians
or botanists, the presence of these young people gives the property
a new function that would Monet would have found utterly appropriate.