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The Doge's Palace (Le Palais ducal)

Claude Monet

European Art

During his only trip to Venice in 1908, Claude Monet painted this view of the Doge’s Palace façade from a gondola in the Grand Canal. Long romanticized in the public imagination, the city had recently become more accessible through new railways and guidebooks. A tourist himself, Monet focused on landmarks such as the Doge’s Palace, the government building designed in the fourteenth century to resemble the architectural style of Venice’s trading partners in the Mamluk Sultanate (present-day Egypt and Syria). Monet downplays the material details of the iconic site, focusing instead on rendering his impression of sunlight and shimmering water in loose, overlapping strokes of color. As he stated in a letter, “The palace that features in my composition was just an excuse for painting the atmosphere.” Although Monet painted directly in front of his motifs, he reworked his Venetian canvases in his Giverny studio in preparation for a 1912 exhibition.
MEDIUM Oil on canvas
  • Place Made: Europe
  • DATES 1908
    DIMENSIONS 32 × 39 in. (81.3 × 99.1 cm) frame: 41 1/4 × 49 × 3 1/2 in. (104.8 × 124.5 × 8.9 cm)  (show scale)
    SIGNATURE Signed and dated lower right: "Claude Monet 1908"
    COLLECTIONS European Art
    CREDIT LINE Gift of A. Augustus Healy
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Claude Monet (French, 1840–1926). The Doge's Palace (Le Palais ducal), 1908. Oil on canvas, 32 × 39 in. (81.3 × 99.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of A. Augustus Healy, 20.634 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 20.634_PS11.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 20.634_PS11.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2021
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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