Fishing Boats Leaving the Harbor, Le Havre (1874) by Claude Monet

Fishing Boats Leaving the Harbor, Le Havre - Claude Monet - 1874

Artwork Information

TitleFishing Boats Leaving the Harbor, Le Havre
ArtistClaude Monet
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions60 x 101 cm (23 5/8 x 39 3/4")
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Fishing Boats Leaving the Harbor, Le Havre

The artwork “Fishing Boats Leaving the Harbor, Le Havre” is a masterful oil on canvas painting created by the eminent artist Claude Monet in the year 1874. As an exemplar of the Impressionist movement, this piece is notable for its loose brushwork and vivid portrayal of light and atmosphere. The painting, which belongs to the cityscape genre, measures 60 by 101 centimeters and currently resides within a private collection.

In the artwork, Monet depicts an active maritime scene with multiple sailing vessels leaving the harbor of Le Havre. The bustling harbor environment is captured with his characteristic swift brushstrokes, accentuating the movement of the water and the dynamism of the scene. The sky above is overcast, possibly indicating early morning or late afternoon light, which bathes the scene in diffused, natural illumination. The port structures and buildings behind the boats are rendered with soft, hazy outlines, indicative of the Impressionist style that conveys a sense of impermanence and change.

The foreground of the painting shows figures along the quay, some of which can be observed going about their daily business. The reflections in the water are loose and expressive, suggesting the gentle movements of the waves. The painting’s palette consists of a range of blues, greys, and off-whites, which together create the impression of a cool, damp climate. Monet’s subtle variations in tone and color, as well as the interactions between light and shadow, contribute to an atmospheric quality that is both evocative and engaging. Overall, the artwork is a vibrant portrayal of the interplay between a community and its maritime setting, executed with the sensitivity to light and color for which Monet is revered.

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