Monet and Chicago

1} Water Lily Pond, 1900 2} Waterloo Bridge, Sunlight Effect, 1903 3} Venice, Palazzo Dario, 1908
4} Family photograph of Claude Monet 5} Houses of Parliament, London, 1900-1901

Life continues to be unsettling and at times difficult due to the pandemic. We are seven months in and COVID-19 along with politics are still at the center of our lives. Where does one go to escape? How do we bring a bit of normalcy to our existence?  Well …. here’s the perfect mini getaway, Monet’s Paris has come to Chicago!

While in the city last week, our team procured tickets to the Monet and Chicago at the Art Institute of Chicago, which will be on exhibit until January 18, 2020. The museum has 33 paintings and 13 drawings of Monet’s that constitutes the largest collection of works by the artist outside of Paris. Here’s a video I’ve watched a few times detailing Monet’s artistic process of painting and deleting items in a series, which is fabulous to view: Beyond the Surface/ Discovering Monet.

Lately, I find myself constantly seeking out beauty from my surroundings; articles that I have read or from the interesting people I social distance with when at work. But, seeing these Impressionistic paintings has ignited my passion for drawing and painting. Perhaps, Claude Monet did say it best: “Every day I discover more and more beautiful things,” he wrote. “It’s enough to drive one mad.”

Stay inspired,

Cookbook Reviews

Claude Monet’s passion for the good life included an extremely cultivated palate for garden fresh vegetables and herbs that were grown to create gourmet meals and delicacies for his family, friends and fellow artists. It was imperative that the freshest ingredients were used so; Monet raised his own free-range chickens, turkeys and ducks, fished from his pond and kept a two-acre vegetable garden hidden away at the other end of the village in Giverny.

IMG_1652{Flower gardens at Heath}

Growing up the “farm to table” premise of providing food was a summer staple within our household. Mom setup the gardens that we now cultivate at Heath to produce flowers and vegetables for the entire family. Over the last week I read several books about Claude Monet’s life at Giverny and his passion for serving meticulously prepared food and tending the gardens that provided the inspiration for many of his paintings. The first book on the list was entitled Monet’s Palate Cookbook: The Artist & His Kitchen Garden at Giverny by Aileen Bordman and Derek Fell {2015} and the second was Monet’s Table: The Cooking Journals of Claude Monet by Claire Joyes {1989}.

monet-s-formal-garden-1886.jpg!Blog{Monet’s Formal Garden by Willard Metcalf painted in 1885}

When reading each book, you are transported to the secret world that was carefully cultivated and orchestrated by Monet so, that once you stepped through the doors of the “Pink House” you were inspired by the grounds and all its beauty. Monet never painted his kitchen garden, but we know what it look like as Willard Metcalf an American Impressionist artist was given permission to paint the square and rectangular beds after a visit to Giverny 1885.

I tried the omelet with goat cheese and fresh herbs recipe for dinner the other night., and it was absolutely delicious. Our basil is growing profusely, along with the rosemary and sage. And, on a busy weekday evening this was an easy meal to throw together and serve with a small salad, crusty bread and a chilled glass of Brut Cava…bon appétit!!!

Garden stylishly,