2011 Student Research Conference:
24th Annual Student Research Conference

Claude Monet: Cataract Development and the Effects on His Artwork
Michelle M. Kimberlin
Dr. Julia DeLancey, Dr. Sara Orel, and Prof. Aaron Fine, Faculty Mentors

Claude Monet, a leading artist of the Impressionist movement, sought to capture the fleeting effects of light and color within his environment. He often produced several paintings of a single motif, depicting the variations of light brought on by the passage of time or change of season. Towards the beginning of the twentieth century, Monet began experiencing symptoms of cataracts in both of his eyes, gradually causing him partial blindness and trouble differentiating colors. In the last decade of his life, during the most severe stage of his cataracts, the colors on Monet's canvases consisted of yellows, muddy reds, and dark greens, which significantly differed from the soft pastels used in his previous series. This paper will examine the symptoms and treatment of Monet's cataracts and will argue that the color and stylistic changes within his later paintings have a direct correlation with his diagnosis.

Keywords: Claude Monet, Impressionism, art, cataract, vision, painting, blindness, colors

Topic(s):Art History

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 35-4
Location: OP 2121
Time: 2:00

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