Monet, Sunrise to Sunset

The French Impressionists painted outside in the open air, quickly capturing scenes of everyday life and the ever-changing effects of light. Artist Claude Monet often painted multiple canvases depicting the same scene at different times of day to capture the changing atmospheric conditions. From 1890-1891, he created over twenty-five paintings of the wheat stacks near his home in Giverny in Northern France. He painted them in different seasons and weather conditions. Fifteen of the Haystacks series were shown in Paris in 1891 to critical acclaim; art critic Gustave Geffroy described Monet’s work as ‘summing up the poetry of the universe within a circumscribed (limited) space.’1

Scratch

This NGV Digital Creatives program is informed by the French Impressionists’ interest in and experimentation with light and colour. Use code and digital drawing tools to animate the transition from sunrise to sunset over a Claude Monet inspired landscape.

Fun fact: Did you know the sun only truly rises in the east on one day of the year and it only appears that way if you are facing north? Monet painted Grainstack (snow effect), 1891, while he was facing south-west, so to him the sun was rising on the left.

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Workshop instructions

Part 1: Look inside

Part 2: Night time

Download a transcript of the workshop instructions

Reference

  1. Katie Hanson, Julia Welch, Ted Gott & Miranda Wallace et al., French Impressionism from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2021., p.213.