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One morning in 1872, just before the break of dawn during a visit to his hometown of Le Havre, artist Claude Monet looked towards the rising sun and decided to try to capture it as he viewed it from his window, but he didn’t think that he would be creating the piece that would be credited to giving a whole art movement its name: The Impressionist Movement.  Impression Sunrise is an oil on canvas piece that currently resides at the Musée Marmottan in Paris, France.At the painting’s first viewing at the Paris Salon in 1874, the painting received a lot of critical backlash.  The famous art critic, Louis Leroy, said that “Wallpaper in its embryonic state is more finished than that seascape” (Artble), and ultimately gave the artists who delved into this style of art their name: Impressionists.  In Impression Sunrise, Claude Monet uses quick brushstrokes, a hazy color palette, and color temperature to create the port city of Le Havre at dawn from Monet’s point of view.

The subject of Impression Sunrise is Le Havre at dawn.  To assist in creating this view of Le Havre, “Monet incorporates a palette of mostly cool, dull colors into the painting with blues and grays, but also includes splashes of warm colors noticed in the sky and the red-orange sun” (Incite).  Color temperature is also used to help illustrate that this scene is at dawn, with the cool grays and blues of night being pushed back by the brighter oranges of the rising sun.As for the brushstrokes, according to Artble, “Impressionism favored rapid brush strokes to accurately depict the immediacy of the scene in front of them” (Artble).

  Monet uses this technique in Impression Sunrise to give a natural look to the painting as well as create an effect of the sun’s light reflecting off the water.Impression Sunrise is a representational work, and it represents two things: a foggy Le Havre in the morning, and then a post-war France looking towards hope.  This a possible representation because the painting was created in 1872, which is just one year after the conclusion of the Franco-Prussian War, which ended with France losing to the German states.In Impression Sunrise, Claude Monet was able to convey meaning.

Now, the artwork is much more important now compared to when it was made, considering that the critics of the time considered it a mere sketch of painting.  Today, it is important because it started the Impressionist movement, gave the movement its name.  And as time passed, the meaning of the artwork never changed, but the function of the work has changed from initially being highly criticized by many to becoming famous for causing a movement that would change the meaning and perception of art forever.  Claude Monet uses quick brushstrokes, a hazy color palette, and color temperature to not only create the port city of Le Havre at dawn from his point of view but also to illustrate France’s revitalization methods to bring hope to a country that recently lost a war.? Works Cited”Analysis of Claude Monet’s Impression, Sunrise.” Incite,”Claude Monet Impression Sunrise Painting, A Masterpiece of Our Time.” – Oil Painting Reproductions,”Ending Conclusion.” Views of Impressionism of Today.,”Impression Sunrise.” Artble, 19 July 2017,

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