Tolle at Monet at Étretat

Monet at Étretat leaves the Seattle Art Museum after today’s last showing (sold out). I’m delighted that I was able to visit this exhibit together with my friend Rebecca while it was in town (all photo credits Rebecca Moyle). We made it a lady’s only outing and rode the new sections of Link light rail downtown. I felt a little guilty in leaving Lake and Lady Kitty out of this cultural event, however this way we were truly able to deeply immerse ourselves in the off-season tourist seaside fishing village of France as Monet (and others) experienced it.

I was crying with emotion as I gazed upon the canvases thick with paint and life. The two paintings pictured above are from 1885 –several lifetimes ago, and yet still so contemporary, speaking loudly to me today. Indeed, Monet was intent upon capturing the very essence of the space and light that surrounds scenes, landscapes and everyday objects through innovative use of bright pigments combined with white, and substituting very dark bright colors for the traditional black. Together with vigorous brush strokes, and sheer genius of vision he was able to create images from his chosen motifs here that are brilliantly suffused with light and motion. Monet breathes life into paint on canvas and I am thrilled I was able to stand inches away and drink them in. Reproductions absolutely cannot do these masterpieces justice.

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