Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza - Inicio

Versión española

Buy tickets

Alma-Tadema and Victorian Painting
in the Pérez-Simón Collection

From 25 June to 12 October 2014 (extended closing date)



Autor:
Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema
Título:
The Roses of Heliogabalus (detail)
Fecha:
1888
Técnica:
Oil on canvas
Medidas:
132.7 x 214.4 cm

Ubicacion:
Pérez-Simón Collection, Mexico

Carmen in Spanish collections

From 7 October until 9 November 2014

Special Collaborative Exhibition. Free entry



Autor:
Pablo Picasso
Título:
Illustrations for Le Carmen des Carmen by Prosper Mérimée and Louis Aragon>
Fecha:
1964
Ubicacion:
Bancaja Collection, Valencia
© Sucesión Pablo Picasso, VEGAP, Madrid, 2014

ficha de la obra
  • Charing Cross Bridge

This text will be replaced

Monet's series of paintings of views of the River Thames was concentrated in the years between 1899 and 1904. On three occasions Monet returned to the Savoy Hotel, and from his high vantage-point there, executed views of both Waterloo and Charing Cross Bridges. His friend, the art critic Gustave Geffroy, recalled visiting Monet with Clemenceau in 1900: "Several times we saw him set up on the balcony of his room, overlooking the Thames-Charing Cross Bridge on his right, Waterloo Bridge on his left [...] In front of us the Thames rolled its waves, almost invisible in the fog. A boat passed like a ghost. The bridges were barely discernible in that space, and on them an all-but-imperceptible movement gave life to the mist's opacity; trains passing each other on Charing Cross Bridge, buses streaming across Waterloo Bridge, wafts of smoke that soon disappeared into the thick and livid vastness. It was an awe-inspiring, solemn, and gloomy spectacle [...] One could almost believe that everything was about to vanish, disappear into that colourless obscurity."

In the present painting, the fog-covered Thames is seen on a late winter's afternoon, barges slowly move upstream, with the hazy silhouette of the Houses of Parliament barely visible in the fading light of the setting sun.

Monet confessed to the art dealer and diarist René Gimpel (entry of 28 November 1918) that he only loved London in the winter-with the fog. "Yes, because I love London much more than the English countryside; yes, I adore London. It is a mass, and ensemble, and it is so simple. And then what I love most of all about London is the fog."

During the three winters that Monet worked in London (1899 to 1901), he is said to have completed only twelve views of the Thames on the spot. Once back in Giverny, he worked on at least eight more canvases. And it was not until 1904 that he eventually exhibited his London views-37 of them-at the gallery of Durand-Ruel in Paris. Virtually all Monet's paintings in the series were worked upon in the studio, and he became less interested in topographical accuracy and more prone to emphasise atmospheric conditions. For example, he eliminated Cleopatra's Needle from the view of Charing Cross Bridge.

At the 1904 exhibition the critic Georges Lecomte claimed that Monet had never "attained such a vaporous subtlety, such power of abstraction and synthesis." Gustave Kahn, erstwhile symbolist poet of the 1880s, friend of Seurat and Fénéon, found other analogies in looking at the eight views of Charing Cross Bridge. "The water is like a mirror on which the vaporous shadows chase and succeed one another-fragile, slow harmonies, like those of Schumann, if you will, or of Faure."

Charing Cross Bridge was already acquired from Monet by Durand-Ruel in November 1901, and sold to the German dealer Paul Cassirer in 1903. It was therefore not included in Durand-Ruel's 1904 exhibition.

Ronald Pickvance

Share this content

  • agregar el contenido en del.icio.us - enlace externo
  • agregar contenido en Facebook - enlace externo
  • agregar contenido en iGoogle - enlace externo
  • agregar contenido en Yahoo - enlace externo
  • agregar contenido en Digg - enlace externo
  • agregar contenido en Technorati - enlace externo
Ministerio de Cultura
El Museo en el Portal de cultura de España

© 2009 Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza

Paseo del Prado 8, 28014 Madrid, España

We use our own cookies and those of third-parties to analyze the use of our website and display personalized advertising. If you continue browsing, we will consider that you consented to its use. For more information see our Cookie Policy.