Differences between Monet and Manet

Differences between Monet and Manet

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22 October, 2021
Claude Monet and Édouard Manet were impressionists from France in the 19th century. They are frequently confused because of their similar names and epochs.

Monet painted landscapes and outdoor scenes, whereas Manet painted more character-driven scenes. The French impressionist movement was named after Claude Monet's painting "Impression soleil levant." The majority of the movement's canvas paintings employ a technique based on strong brushstrokes, with an emphasis on light and color rather than outlines of shapes.


Claude Monet and Édouard Manet

Monet, unlike many of his contemporaries, did not try to imitate other artists, preferring to paint what he saw with his own eyes. He fought in Algeria for a few years as an enlisted cavalryman before his aunt exempted him from service. When Monet returned home, he painted his future wife as well as many outdoor scenes, and he began to gain recognition. The problem is that recognition does not feed his man, and Monet threw himself into the Seine in 1968, intending to end his life because he couldn't bear the thought of not being able to provide for himself and his family. Attempt failed, as he swam back to shore and resumed painting. He visited England and Amsterdam before returning to Giverny, where he married and had another child. After a few years, Monet had saved enough money to purchase a house and a plot of land - he did well not to drown, after all. After his first wife died, he married again and traveled throughout Europe. Monet lived a long and happy life painting landscapes and water lilies on his property, surrounded by his family and financially secure, which was not the case for all artists at the time, before dying of lung cancer at the age of 86. One of his canvas paintings, Monet - The Water Lily Pond, sold for $80.4 million in 2008.


Manet, in contrast, used a lot more lines in his canvas paintings than most Impressionists and preferred to work in his studio rather than outside like Monet. Coming from a wealthy family, he used his money to organize exhibitions after his work was rejected by more traditional workshops and galleries. Simultaneously, he was working to get his works into the Salon de Paris, which was the "big deal" at the time. His canvas painting "Olympia" sparked outrage because her main subject was a naked courtesan, or if you prefer, a luxury prostitute. She's naked on the bed, with an orchid in her hair, a flower bouquet, and a black cat. No one would have imagined that 1863 Paris was sexually liberated...

Differences between Monet and Manet

Manet also painted war scenes, which enraged the government. He couldn't show a whole series of paintings on canvas because they portrayed the French government and army of the time in a negative light. Manet married a piano teacher, which may seem uninteresting unless you know she also slept with her father. They didn't marry until after Manet's father died, and their 11-year-old child at the time could have been from any of them. Manet met a worse fate than Monet, dying at the age of 51 from syphilis, rheumatism, and gangrene. In 2000, one of his paintings sold for $20 million, which pleased the grandchildren of the aforementioned pianist.


So, to summarize...

Claude Monet: exterior scenes, attempted suicide, married twice, had two children with his first wife, retired to Giverny, and lived a long and prosperous life.

Édouard Manet: interiors and characters, war scenes, shared his father's girlfriend, died young from diseases you prefer not to catch.

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