About This Artwork

Claude Monet
French, 1840-1926

Bordighera, 1884

Oil on canvas
65 x 80.8 cm (25 5/8 x 31 13/16 in.)
Inscribed, lower left: Claude Monet 84

Potter Palmer Collection, 1922.426

Wildenstein, Claude Monet, biographie et catalogue raisonné, 1979 854

This work is featured in the online catalogue Monet Paintings and Drawings at the Art Institute of Chicago, the first volume in the Art Institute’s scholarly digital series on the Impressionist circle. The catalogue offers in-depth curatorial and technical entries on 47 artworks by Claude Monet in museum’s collection; entries feature interactive and layered high-resolution imaging, previously unpublished technical photographs, archival materials, and documentation relating to each artwork.



Early in 1884, Claude Monet traveled to Bordighera, a town on the Italian Riviera, close to the border between Italy and France, for a working visit of three weeks that turned into nearly three months. In a letter to the sculptor Auguste Rodin describing his efforts to translate into paint the brilliant Mediterranean light, Monet declared he was "fencing, wrestling, with the sun." In other letters, he complained of the impossibility of finding a motif due to the abundant vegetation. In this sun-drenched composition painted from a hilltop vantage point, the sea is barely visible through the interlaced trunks of local pine trees.

— Permanent collection label

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Exhibition History

Paris, Georges Petit, 6e exposition internationale de peinture et de sculpture, May 8–June 8, 1887, no cat. no.

Boston, Copley Society, Loan Collection of Paintings by Claude Monet and Eleven Sculptures by Auguste Rodin, Mar. 1905, cat. 18, as Bordighera, 1884. Lent by Mrs. Potter Palmer.

Art Institute of Chicago, Paintings from the Collection of Mrs. Potter Palmer, May 10–Nov., 1910, cat. 33, as Antibes.

Art Institute of Chicago, “A Century of Progress”: Loan Exhibition of Paintings and Sculpture, May 23–Nov. 1, 1933, cat. 290A.

Art Institute of Chicago, “A Century of Progress”: Loan Exhibition of Paintings and Sculpture for 1934, June 1–Oct. 31, 1934, cat. 207.

Toledo (Ohio) Museum of Art, French Impressionists and Post–Impressionists, Nov. 1934, cat. 9.

Oberlin (Ohio) College, Allen Art Museum, Feb. 10–Mar. 19, 1953, no cat.

Art Institute of Chicago, The Paintings of Claude Monet, Apr. 1–June 15, 1957, no cat. no.

City Art Museum of St. Louis, Claude Monet: A Loan Exhibition, Sept. 25–Oct. 22, 1957, cat. 58 (ill.); Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Nov. 1–Dec. 1, 1957.
Art Institute of Chicago, Paintings by Monet, Mar. 15–May 11, 1975, cat. 64 (ill.).

Paris, Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Hommage à Claude Monet (1840–1926), Feb. 8–May 5, 1980, cat. 88 (ill.).

Paris, Centre Culturel du Marais, Claude Monet au temps de Giverny, Apr. 6–July 17, 1983, cat. 7 (ill.).

Tokyo, Seibu Museum of Art, Shikago bijutsukan insho-ha ten [The Impressionist tradition: Masterpieces from the Art Institute of Chicago], Oct. 18–Dec. 17, 1985, cat. 42 (ill.); Fukuoka Art Museum, Jan. 5–Feb. 2, 1986; Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, Mar. 4–Apr. 13, 1986.

Art Institute of Chicago, Claude Monet, 1840–1926, July 22–Nov. 26, 1995, cat. 77 (ill.).

Forth Worth, Tex., Kimbell Art Museum, Monet and the Mediterranean, June 8–Sept. 7, 1997, cat. 4 (ill.); New York, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Oct. 10, 1997–Jan. 4, 1998.

Portland (Ore.) Museum of Art, Impressions of the Riviera: Monet, Renoir, Matisse and Their Contemporaries, June 25–Oct. 18, 1998, cat. 50 (ill.).

Amsterdam, Van Gogh Museum, Vincent’s Choice: The Musée Imaginaire of Van Gogh, Feb. 14–June 15, 2003, cat. 138 (ill.).

Fort Worth, Tex., Kimbell Art Museum, The Impressionists: Master Paintings from the Art Institute of Chicago, June 29–Nov. 2, 2008, cat. 47 (ill.).

Publication History

Gustave Geffroy, “Salon de 1887. Hors du Salon: Claude Monet,” La justice, pt. 2 (June 2, 1887), p. 1.

Gustave Geffroy, “Histoire de l’impressionnisme,” La vie artistique 3, 2 (1894), p. 70.

Copley Society, Loan Collection of Paintings by Claude Monet and Eleven Sculptures by August Rodin, exh. cat. (Copley Society, 1905), p. 15, cat. 18.

Art Institute of Chicago, Paintings from the Collection of Mrs. Potter Palmer, exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago, 1910), cat. 33.

Art Institute of Chicago, “Accessions and Loans,” Bulletin of the Art Institute of Chicago 16, 3 (May 1922), p. 47.

Art Institute of Chicago, Handbook of Sculpture, Architecture, and Paintings, pt. 2, Paintings (Art Institute of Chicago, 1922), p. 68, cat. 830.

Gustave Geffroy, Claude Monet: Sa vie, son temps, son oeuvre (G. Crès, 1922), p. 273.

M. C., “Monets in the Art Institute,” Bulletin of the Art Institute of Chicago 19, 2 (Feb. 1925), p. 19.

Art Institute of Chicago, A Guide to the Paintings in the Permanent Collection (Art Institute of Chicago, 1925), p. 146, cat. 830.

Art Institute of Chicago, Catalogue of “A Century of Progress”: Exhibition of Paintings and Sculpture; Lent from American Collections, ed. Daniel Catton Rich, 3rd ed., exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago, 1933), p. 43, cat. 290A.

Daniel Catton Rich, “Französische Impressionisten im Art Institute zu Chicago,” Pantheon: Monatsschrift für freunde und sammler der kunst 11, 3 (Mar. 1933), p. 77. Translated by C. C. H. Drechsel as “French Impressionists in the Art Institute of Chicago,” Pantheon/Cicerone (Mar. 1933), p. 18.

Art Institute of Chicago, Catalogue of “A Century of Progress”: Exhibition of Paintings and Sculpture, 1934, ed. Daniel Catton Rich, exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago, 1934), p. 36, cat. 207.

Toledo Museum of Art, Catalogue: French Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, exh. cat. (Toledo Museum of Art, 1934), cat. 9.

George Slocombe, “Giver of Light,” Coronet (Mar. 1938), p. 25 (ill.).

Oscar Reuterswärd, Monet: En konstnärshistorik (Bonniers, 1948), opp. 104 (ill.); p. 285.

Kenneth Clark, Landscape into Art (John Murray, 1949), pp. xiii; 93; pl. 83.

Art Institute of Chicago, An Illustrated Guide to the Collections of the Art Institute of Chicago (Art Institute of Chicago, 1956), p. 34.

Art Institute of Chicago, ”Homage to Claude Monet,” Art Institute of Chicago Quarterly 51, 2 (Apr. 1, 1957), p. 24.

Art Institute of Chicago, “Catalogue,” Art Institute of Chicago Quarterly 51, 2 (Apr. 1, 1957), p. 33.

Art Institute of Chicago, “Chronology,” Art Institute of Chicago Quarterly 51, 2 (Apr. 1, 1957), p. 30 (ill.).

Claude Monet: A Loan Exhibition, exh. cat. (Minneapolis Society of the Fine Arts, 1957), pp. 64; 65, cat. 58 (ill.).

Edith Weigle, “The Wonderful World of Art,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May 26, 1957, p. E2.

William C. Seitz, “Claude Monet’s View of Nature,” in Claude Monet: A Loan Exhibition, exh. cat. (Minneapolis Society of the Fine Arts, 1957), pp. 24, 30.

Denis Rouart, Claude Monet, trans. James Emmons (Skira, 1958), pp. 80 (ill.), 129.

Art Institute of Chicago, Paintings in the Art Institute of Chicago: A Catalogue of the Picture Collection (Art Institute of Chicago, 1961), p. 319.

Yvon Taillandier, Monet, trans. A. P. H. Hamilton (Crown, [1963]), pp. 56, 58 (ill.).

Luigina Rossi Bortolatto, L’opera completa di Claude Monet: 1870–1889, Classici dell’arte 63 (Rizzoli, 1972), pp. 105; 106, cat. 270 (ill.).

Grace Seiberling, “The Evolution of an Impressionist,” in Paintings by Monet, ed. Susan Wise, exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago, 1975), p. 30.

Susan Wise, ed., Paintings by Monet, exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago, 1975), p. 118, cat. 64 (ill.).

Rodolphe Walter, with the assistance of Giuseppe E. Bessone, “Charles Garnier et Claude Monet à Bordighera,” L’oeil 258–59 (Jan.–Feb. 1977), p. 26 (ill.).

Roger Terry Dunn, “The Monet-Rodin Exhibition at the Galerie Georges Petit in 1889” (Ph.D. diss., Northwestern University, 1978), pp. iii; 121; 272, ill. 5.

Daniel Wildenstein, Claude Monet: Biographie et catalogue raisonné, vol. 2, Peintures, 1882–1886 (Bibliothèque des Arts, 1979), pp. 23; 114; 115, cat. 854 (ill.); 253, letter 498.

Daniel Wildenstein, Claude Monet: Biographie et catalogue raisonné, vol. 3, Peintures, 1887–1898 (Bibliothèque des Arts, 1979), p. 2, n. 621.

J. Patrice Marandel, The Art Institute of Chicago: Favorite Impressionist Paintings (Crown, 1979), pp. 58–59 (ill.).

Diane Kelder, The Great Book of French Impressionism (Abbeville, 1980), p. 211 (ill.).

Hélène Adhémar, Anne Distel, and Sylvie Gache, Hommage à Claude Monet (1840–1926), exh. cat. (Réunion des Musées Nationaux, 1980), pp. 256–58, cat. 88 (ill.).

Jacqueline and Maurice Guillaud, Claude Monet au temps de Giverny, exh. cat. (Centre Culturel du Marais, 1983), pp. 24; 26–27, fig. 9/cat. 7; 32–33. Translated as Jacqueline and Maurice Guillaud, Claude Monet at the time of Giverny, exh. cat. (Centre Culturel du Marais, 1983), pp. 24; 26–27, fig. 9/cat. 7; 32–33.

Robert Gordon and Andrew Forge, Monet (Abrams, 1983), pp. 110 (ill.), 291.

Art Institute of Chicago, Seibu Museum of Art, Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, and Fukuoka Art Museum, eds., Shikago bijutsukan insho-ha ten [The Impressionist tradition: Masterpieces from the Art Institute of Chicago], trans. Akihiko Inoue, Hideo Namba, Heisaku Harada, and Yoko Maeda, exh. cat. (Nippon Television Network, 1985), pp. 92, cat. 42 (ill.); 150–51, cat. 42 (ill.).

Daniel Wildenstein, Claude Monet: Biographie et catalogue raisonné, vol. 4, Peintures, 1899–1926 (Bibliothèque des Arts, 1985), p. 44, n. 412.

John House, Monet: Nature into Art (Yale University Press, 1986), pp. 195; 196, pl. 245.
Richard R. Brettell, French Impressionists (Art Institute of Chicago/Abrams, 1987), pp. 75, 77 (ill.), 118.

Francesco Arcangeli, Monet (Nuova Alfa, 1989), pp. 55; 119, fig. 45; 155.

Richard Kendall, ed., Monet by Himself: Paintings, Drawings, Pastels, Letters, trans. Bridget Strevens Romer (Macdonald Orbis, 1989), pp. 147 (ill.), 319.

Karin Sagner-Düchting, Claude Monet, 1840–1926: Ein Fest für die Augen (Benedikt Taschen, 1990), p. 137 (ill.). Translated by Karen Williams as Claude Monet, 1840–1926: A Feast for the Eyes (Taschen, 2004), p. 137 (ill.).

Rachel Barnes, ed., Monet by Monet, Artists by Themselves (Webb & Bower, 1990), pp. 42–43 (ill.).

Daniel Wildenstein, Claude Monet: Catalogue raisonné, vol. 5, Supplément aux peintures: Dessins; Pastels; Index (Wildenstein Institute, 1991), p. 41.

Michael Howard, ed., The Impressionists by Themselves: A Selection of Their Paintings, Drawings and Sketches with Extracts from their Writings (Conran Octopus, 1991), p. 249 (ill.).

Bernd Küster, Monet: Seine Reisen in den Süden (Ellert and Richter, 1992), pp. 24–25, fig. 1.

Sophie Fourny-Dargère, Monet, Profils de l’art (Chêne, 1992), p. 153, fig. 22.

Christoph Heinrich, Claude Monet, 1840–1926 (Benedikt Taschen, 1993), pp. 63 (ill.), 95.

Art Institute of Chicago, Treasures of 19th- and 20th-Century Painting: The Art Institute of Chicago, with an introduction by James. N. Wood (Art Institute of Chicago/Abbeville, 1993), p. 96 (ill.).

Steven Z. Levine, Monet, Narcissus, and Self-Reflection: The Modernist Myth of the Self (University of Chicago Press, 1994), pp. 41; fig. 39; 94.

Paul Hayes Tucker, Claude Monet: Life and Art (Yale University Press, 1995), pp. 120; 121, fig. 137.

Charles F. Stuckey, with the assistance of Sophia Shaw, Claude Monet, 1840–1926, exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago/Thames & Hudson, 1995), pp. 13; 17; 98, cat. 77 (ill.); 210; 215; 237.

Andrew Forge, Monet, Artists in Focus (Art Institute of Chicago, 1995), pp. 29–31; 33 (detail); 34; 79, pl. 8; 107.

Daniel Wildenstein, Monet, or The Triumph of Impressionism, cat. rais., vol. 1 (Taschen/Wildenstein Institute, 1996), pp. 198, 200 (ill.).

Daniel Wildenstein, Monet: Catalogue raisonné/Werkverzeichnis, vol. 2, Nos. 1–968 (Taschen/Wildenstein Institute, 1996), pp. 316, cat. 854 (ill.); 319.

Stephan Koja, Claude Monet, exh. cat. (Österreichische Galerie/Prestel, 1996), pp. 27
(ill.), 100. Translated by John Brownjohn as Claude Monet, exh. cat. (Österreichische Galerie/Prestel, 1996), pp. 26, 27 (ill.).

Genevieve Morgan, ed., Monet: The Artist Speaks (Collins, 1996), pp. 53 (ill.), 95.

Helen Dudar, “Monet on the Mediterranean: When Light Meets Water,” Smithsonian (July 1997), p. 81 (detail).

Joachim Pissarro, Monet and the Mediterranean, exh. cat. (Kimbell Art Museum/Rizzoli, 1997), pp. 31; 37; 74; 76, pl. 4; 182, n. 52.

Kimbell Art Museum, “Monet and the Mediterranean,” Calendar (Feb.–Aug. 1997), p. 11 (ill.).

Meyer Schapiro, Impressionism: Reflections and Perceptions (Braziller, 1997), pp. 72, fig. 22; 73; 348.

Silvia Alborno, Monet: A Bordighera, exh. cat. (Città di Bordighera/Leonardo Periodici, 1998), p. 86 (ill.).

Matthias Arnold, Claude Monet, Rowohlts Monographien (Rowohlt, 1998), back cover (ill.), pp. 16, 17 (ill.).

Scott Heller, “The Good, the Bad & the Hard to Look at,” Artnews (Dec. 1998), p. 123 (ill.).

Kenneth Wayne, Impressions of the Riviera: Monet, Renoir, Matisse and Their Contemporaries, exh. cat. (Portland Museum of Art, 1998), pp. 6, fig. 2; 7; 78, cat. 50.

Thomas McBurney, Artistic Greatness: A Comparative Exploration of Michelangelo, Beethoven, and Monet (Galde, 1999), p. 287 (ill.).

Renaud Temperini, “Estetiche della modernità,” in La pittura francese, vol. 3, ed. Pierre Rosenberg, trans. Cosima Campagnolo, Valentina Palombi, and Stefano Salpietro (Electra, 1999), pp. 801, fig. 815; 806.

Vanessa Potts, Essential Monet, with an introduction by Claire I. R. O’Mahony (Dempsey Parr/Parragon, 1999), pp. 142–43 (ill.).

Vivian Russell, Monet’s Landscapes (Frances Lincoln, 2000), pp. 20 (ill.), 160.

Art Institute of Chicago, Impressionism and Post-Impressionism in the Art Institute of Chicago, selected by James N. Wood (Art Institute of Chicago/Hudson Hills, 2000), p. 75 (ill.).

Maria Teresa Benedetti, Monet: I luoghi (Giunti, 2001), p. 177 (ill.).

Fabrizio d’Amico, “Monet e il Mediterraneo: Da Bordighera ad Antibes,” in Monet: I luoghi della pittura, ed. Marco Goldin, exh. cat. (Linea d’Ombra Libri, 2001), p. 177 (ill.).

Norio Shimada and Keiko Sakagami, Kurodo Mone meigashu: Hikari to kaze no kiseki [Claude Monet: 1881–1926], vol. 2 (Nihon Bijutsu Kyoiku Senta, 2001), pp. 52, no. 185 (ill.); 189.

Richard R. Brettell, From Monet to Van Gogh: A History of Impressionism, vol. 2 (Teaching Co., 2002), pp. 78, 89, 179.

Guido Giuffrè, “Monet e l’arte italiana nell’ultimo quarto dell’Ottocento,” in Monet: Atti del convegno, ed. Rodolphe Rapetti, MaryAnne Stevens, Michael Zimmerman, and Marco Goldin (Linea d’Ombra, 2003), p. 22 (ill.).

Chris Stolwijk, Sjraar van Heugten, Leo Jansen, and Andreas Blühm, eds., Vincent’s Choice: Van Gogh’s Musée Imaginaire, exh. cat. (Van Gogh Museum/Thames & Hudson, 2003), pp. 273, pl. 138; 308.

Richard Thomson, “Monet e il mare di Nettuno: Bordighera, 1884. Antibes, 1888,” in L’oro e l’azzurro: I colori del sud da Cézanne a Bonnard, ed. Marco Goldin, trans. Viviana Tonon, exh. cat. (Linea d’Ombra Libri, 2003), pp. 69, 70, 71 (ill.).

Nienke Bakker, “Chronology: Vincent van Gogh as Connoisseur and Bookworm,” in Vincent’s Choice: Van Gogh’s Musée Imaginaire, ed. Chris Stolwijk, Sjraar van Heugten, Leo Jansen, and Andreas Blühm, exh. cat. (Van Gogh Museum/Thames & Hudson, 2003), p. 305.

Eleanor Dwight, ed., The Letters of Pauline Palmer: A Great Lady of Chicago’s First Family (M. T. Train/Scala, 2005), pp. 301 (ill.), 302.

Birgit Zeidler, Claude Monet: Life and Work, trans. Paul Aston in association with Goodfellow & Egan (Könemann, 2005), p. 58 (ill.).

Richard Thomson, “Monet and Neptune’s Sea: Bordighera 1884. Antibes, 1888,” in Right under the Sun: Landscape in Provence, From Classicism to Modernism (1750–1920), ed. Guy Cogeval and Marie-Paule Vial, exh. cat. (Montreal Museum of Fine Arts/Snoeck, 2005), pp. 115; 116; 118, fig. 3; 119.

Guy Cogeval and Marie-Paule Vial, eds., Right under the Sun: Landscape in Provence, From Classicism to Modernism (1750–1920), exh. cat. (Montreal Museum of Fine Arts/Snoeck, 2005), p. 259.

Jesse Matz, “Cultures of Impression,” in Bad Modernisms, ed. Douglas Mao and Rebecca L. Walkowitz (Duke University Press, 2006), pp. 313; 314, fig. 7 (detail).

Christiane Eluère, Monet et la Riviera (Citadelle & Mazenod, 2006), pp. 46–47, ill. 35; 48; 175, ill. 135.

Charles F. Stuckey, “Monet’s Path at Cap Martin: Adding a Very Big Piece to the Impressionist Puzzle,” in Wildenstein and Co., Claude Monet (1840–1926): A Tribute to Daniel Wildenstein and Katia Granoff, exh. cat. (Wildenstein, 2007), pp. 61, 62.

Sotheby’s, London, Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale, sale cat. (Sotheby’s, London, Feb. 5, 2007), pp. 20, fig. 2; 21.

Gloria Groom and Douglas Druick, with the assistance of Dorota Chudzicka and Jill Shaw, The Impressionists: Master Paintings from the Art Institute of Chicago, exh. cat. (Art Institute of Chicago/Kimbell Art Museum, 2008), pp. 13; 106–07, cat. 47 (ill.). Simultaneously published as Gloria Groom and Douglas Druick, with the assistance of Dorota Chudzicka and Jill Shaw, The Age of Impressionism at the Art Institute of Chicago (Art Institute of Chicago/Yale University Press, 2008), pp. 13; 106–07, cat. 47 (ill.).

Jon Kear, The Treasures of the Impressionists (Andre Deutsch, 2008), pp. 58 (ill.), 72.

Susie Hodge, Monet: His Life and Works in 500 Images (Lorenz, 2009), p. 62 (detail).

Pascal Bonafoux, Monet, peintre de l’eau (Du Chêne/Hachette, 2010), pp. 82 (ill.), 173.

Manlio Brusatin, “Mediterraneo. La strada dei colori,” in Mediterraneo: Da Courbet a Monet a Matisse, ed. Marco Goldin, exh. cat. (Linea d’Ombra, 2010), p. 65.

Ségolène Le Men, Monet (Citadelles & Mazenod, 2010), pp. 248–49, ill. 200.

Claire Maingon and Félicie de Maupeou, La bibliothèque de Monet, under the direction of Ségolène Le Men, exh. cat. (Citadelles & Mazenod, 2013), p. 45 (ill.).

“Cat. 20: Bordighera, 1884,” in Monet Paintings and Drawings at the Art Institute of Chicago, ed. Gloria Groom and Jill Shaw (Art Institute of Chicago, 2014).

Ownership History

Sold by the artist to Isidore Montaignac, Paris, as the agent for Knoedler and Company, New York, Sept. 1891. [1]

Sold by Knoedler and Company, New York, to Potter Palmer, Chicago, Sept. 1891. [2]

By descent from Potter Palmer (died 1902), Chicago, to the Palmer family. [3]

Given by the Palmer family to the Art Institute of Chicago, 1922.

NOTES

[1] According to Daniel Wildenstein, Monet: Catalogue raisonné/Werkverzeichnis, vol. 2, Nos. 1–968 (Taschen/Wildenstein Institute, 1996), pp. 316, cat. 854 (ill.); 319.

[2] According to Daniel Wildenstein, Monet: Catalogue raisonné/Werkverzeichnis, vol. 2, Nos. 1–968 (Taschen/Wildenstein Institute, 1996), pp. 316, cat. 854 (ill.); 319.

[3] This painting was on loan from the Palmer family to the Art Institute of Chicago, intermittently, by 1921, according to Museum Registration department artists sheets on file in Museum Registration, Art Institute of Chicago.




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