what does claude monet impression: sunrise show
This work was painted from a hotel window at Le Havre in 1873 (Monet later dated it incorrectly to 1872). It was one of the nine works that he showed at the First Impressionist Exhibition of 1874. Of all those displayed there, this is probably the most famous picture, not so much because of any crucial status within Monet’s oeuvre, but rather for the criticism it attracted from the reviewers, which gave rise to the name of the movement. On 25 April, ten days after the exhibition had opened, an article appeared in the satirical journal Le Charivari in which the critic Louis Leroy described a fictitious conversation between two visitors. One of them was a landscape painter who, while looking at this work, exclaimed: ‘Impressionism, I knew it; after all I’m impressed so it must be an impression. What freedom! What ease of workmanship! Wallpaper in its embryonic state is more finished than this seascape!’ The article was entitled ‘The Exhibition of the Impressionists’, and the label stuck thereafter, as well as being used by such other critics of the exhibition as Castagnary.
Despite its notoriety the painting is in some ways untypical of Monet’s own work of this period and of Impressionism more generally. It shows little of the Impressionist treatment of light and color. The colors are very restrained and the paint is applied not in discrete brushstrokes of contrasting colours but in very thin washes. In some places the canvas is even visible and the only use of impasto is in the depiction of the reflected sunlight on the water. The painting is strongly atmospheric rather than analytical and has a spirit somewhat akin to Turner’s works. Nevertheless, it does illustrate particularly well one of the features of Impressionist painting that was thought so revolutionary. The technique is very ‘sketchy’ and would have been seen as a preliminary study for a painting rather than a finished work suitable for exhibition. (Monet himself saw the work as unfinished, and it was for that reason that he adopted the title ‘Impression’ to distinguish it from such works as his other view of Le Havre in the same exhibition, though this too lacks the finish then expected.) In this work Monet stripped away the details to a bare minimum: the dockyards in the background are merely suggested by a few brushstrokes as are the boats in the foreground. The whole represents the artist’s swift attempt to capture a fleeting moment. The highly visible, near abstract technique, compels almost more attention than the subjectmatter itself, a notion then wholly alien to viewers.
For an interpretation of other pictures from the 19th and 20th centuries, see: Analysis of Modern Paintings (1800-2000).
Poppy Field (Argenteuil) (1873) Musee d’Orsay, Paris.
Masterpiece of plein-air painting.
A complete rejection of the traditional tastes of Paris’ prestigious Académie des Beaux-Arts, Monet’s approach to painting transformed 19th-century art, with Impression, Sunrise serving as the tipping point.
In 1856, under the mentorship of fellow future Impressionist Eugène Boudin, Monet began dabbling in oil paints and painting en plein air, or outdoors—two habits that he would maintain for the rest of his life. “I have never had [a studio]” Monet confided, ” and personally I do not understand why anybody would want to shut themselves up in some room. Maybe for drawing, sure; but not for painting.”
Jules Castagnary for Le Siècle wrote that the group of painters could be described by no other word beside the new term impressionists, since they rendered the “sensation evoked by the landscape” rather than the landscape. He claimed that “The very word has entered their language: not landscape, but impression, in the title given in the catalog for M. Monet’s Sunrise. From this point of view, they have left reality behind for a realm of pure idealism”, typified by Monet’s Impression, Sunrise. 
The group of studies made from Monet’s hotel room were made from canvas with a base layer of gray in different tones. The layered effect provides depth in spite of imprecise details, creating a rich and tangible environment that seems like Le Havre, though not an exact likeness. Gordon and Forge discuss boundaries and the use of color in Impression, Sunrise, claiming that sky and water in Impression, Sunrise are hardly distinguishable, boundaries between objects are not obvious, and the paint “becomes the place” and effect, the colors of the paint melding together in “its glooming, opalescent oneness, its foggy blankness, its featureless, expectant emptiness that resembles, for the painter, an empty, uninflected canvas.” They comment that the accents of blue-gray and orange cutting through the haze “are like last-minute revelations that had to wait, not only for the particular glimmer of orange to burn its way through the fog and find its reflective path onto the water and Monet’s eye but for the canvas itself, pregnant with the foggy space outside, to be ready to receive it.” 
From the 15th April to 15th May 1874 Monet exhibited his work together with Camille Pissarro, Alfred Sisley, Édouard Manet, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, and some other thirty artists. They organized their exhibition on their own as they were usually rejected at the Paris Salon. Most visitors were disgusted and even outraged over such a graffiti. Monet’s Impression, Sunrise enjoyed the most attention and some visitors even claimed that they were absolutely unable to recognize what was shown at all.
A critic who attended the exhibition, M. Louis Leroy, wrote a now famous article in Le Charivari in which he used the term “Impressionist” based on the title of this painting. Despite the fact that Leroy had used the word derisively, the group decided to adopt it and painters such as Renoir and Degas were happy to be called Impressionists