Postponed Monet Exhibit Now Happening After Almost 120 Years

The artist originally planned to show his paintings of the River Thames in London in 1905.

In 1904, Claude Monet exhibited 37 of his paintings depicting London’s Charing Cross Bridge, Waterloo Bridge, and the Houses of Parliament in a Paris gallery.

Afterward, he wanted to show the River Thames series in London but his plans did not push through. Just three weeks before the scheduled exhibit, the artist postponed it indefinitely.

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Waterloo Bridge, Gray Weather (1900) | Image via Wikimedia Commons

A Perfectionist at Heart

The artist never rescheduled the show, despite how well received the Paris exhibit was. Karen Serres, senior curator at the Courtauld, even said that it “cemented his reputation as France’s most important living artist.”

One of the pieces from the series, Houses of Parliament, Sunset, even sold for $76 million at a Christie’s auction in 2022.

According to the Art Newspaper, Monet was dissatisfied with the state of his canvases. The perfectionist painter often refined his pieces in his studio after painting in front of the subject. 

Houses of Parliament, Sunset (1900-1903) | Image via Wikimedia Commons

Because this was a whole series, he was anxious to make minor adjustments to some of the paintings he had already presented in Paris. Monet ended up abandoning the idea of a London exhibit and moved on to focus on other works.

A Revitalized Vision

Now for the first time since the exhibit was postponed almost 120 years ago, the Courtauld will be showcasing most of the pieces Monet himself chose.

The London gallery will open Monet and London: Views of the Thames on September 27, 2024 and it will run until January 19, 2025.

Charing Cross Bridge, the Thames (1903) | Image via Wikimedia Commons

The exhibit will feature 19 of the 37 works from Monet’s 1904 Paris show. This is the largest group of his London scenes to be shown together since then.

The venue is located just 300 meters away from the Savoy Hotel, where Monet painted many of these pieces.

The Courtauld stated that the exhibit will “provide visitors with the unique experience of seeing the show Monet curated and the works he felt best represented his ambitious artistic enterprise.”

Banner image via Wikimedia Commons.

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