It's one thing to see the works of art in a museum. It's an entirely different thing to walk in the steps of the artist, and imagine him sitting precisely where we are sitting, admiring the scene before him, and recreating this beauty on canvas.
Few places in the world can boast offering this experience - the Monet Gardens in Giverny are one of them.
It’s really interesting to visit the workshop and house of Monet - did you know that he was such an admirer of Impressionism, he covered his bedroom walls with works of Cézanne, Renoir and Manet?
And of course, the big ticket item. One of the most famous scenes of the history of the 3rd art – the water lily pond. Monet had this pond dug after he moved to the estate, against his neighbors advice – they were worried his weird, exotic plants would poison the water!
The pond is designed after the many Japanese prints Monet collected – an influence that is very obvious with the wooden bridges, the bamboo trees and the many nympheas. In fact, it was the first time in the history of painting that an artist had shaped nature the way he wanted to paint it – for nature is what it is, the way it was created, not man-made. I think it’s interesting that Monet had this painting in mind before it even actually existed!
Good to know: the Monet Gardens are accessible by daytrip from Paris. Just rent a car and go!