The Red Boats by Claude Oscar Monet, painted in 1875

The Red Boats, Argenteuil by Claude Oscar Monet, painted in 1875, describes a scene of fishing boats on the Seine, 10 kilometres from Paris

In the 1870s, Monet lived in Argenteuil, a town on the Seine only seventeen miles from Paris and accessible to the city by train. He often worked outdoors in his own boat and painted this basin several times, though the lower vantage point of this scene suggests a perspective from the shoreline. Eliminating the factory smokestacks that were in fact visible at this location, Monet instead highlights the area’s picturesque and recreational aspects, including the boat rental area on the left.

The Red Boats describes a typical daily scene, a modern-day subject. Monet’s lively brushstrokes give life to the water and sky of this quiet scene. There are not many clouds in the sky — the ones he did depict are small and gathered on the top right corner. The sky close to the horizon is almost white, and with visible brush strokes and in a gradient manner, it turns into dark blue while reaching the edge of the canvas. Monet depicts some orange coloured houses, along with tall trees on the left, and many sailboats on the right.

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