The five paintings, which together depict the French master’s transition to abstract expressionism over a period of fifteen years, will be auctioned in London in March, according to Sotheby’s.
The works all date from before 1900 – meaning they give a glimpse of the artist’s development and style before he painted the most famous pieces from his ‘Water Lilies’ series in the early 20th century.
“By charting the progression towards his magnificent water lily paintings, these five stunning works brilliantly articulate Monet’s story as the father of modern art,” said Helena Newman, Chair of Sotheby’s Europe and Global Head of Impressionist and Modern Art.
“Les Demoiselles de Giverny” is the most valuable work of the five Monet paintings that go on sale in March Credit: Sotheby’s
It is the highest valued of the five works in the collection.
Another of the paintings, an 1897 canvas entirely populated with flowers entitled “Massif de chrysanthèmes,” could be seen as a precursor to Monet’s most famous works from the “Water Lilies” series, according to Sotheby’s in a press release. In fact, his first water lily pictures date from the very same year that he took these close-up photographs of flowers.
“Glaçons, environs de Bennecourt” shares some of the same motifs and styles as the French Impressionist’s later “Water Lilies” paintings Credit: Sotheby’s
“Glaçons, environs de Bennecourt,” included in the collection, also demonstrates Monet’s path to the later water lily paintings, according to the auction house. This painting conveys the effect of heavy snow and frost on the Seine, and the artist’s depiction of the ice on the river’s surface is not dissimilar to the depiction of flowers on the water in the works he began some years later, Sotheby’s noted.
The paintings will be on display at Sotheby’s galleries in New York, Hong Kong, Taipei and London ahead of the March 2 sale.