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Do You Hate Impressionism & Claude Monet? Then Keep Away From The Marmottan Museum & Stop Reading This Article!

Just a warning to those who have landed on this page and hate impressionism art and Claude Monet. Close this page NOW! Because this article is about the incredible Marmottan Monet Museum in Paris that has the largest Claude Monet Art Collection in the world!!

Claude Monet Collection at the Marmottan Monet Museum
Monet Paintings at the Marmottan Monet Museum
Photo by William Allen, Image Historian on Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

So Why Does the Marmottan Museum Get Overlooked by the D’Orsay??

This is a fantastic question and I am not sure why the D’Orsay Museum gets all the attention! Yes, Musee D’Orsay is incredible, fantastic and is a MUST! But the Marmottan Monet Museum is just as incredible!!! And even more so if you LOVE Claude Monet!

The Musée Marmottan Monet is a beautiful gem located in the chic Passy neighbourhood, in the 16th arrondissement. The museum was once a hunting lodge but today the impressive building houses an incredible collection of Impressionism paintings.

Musee Martmottan Monet Paris
Marmottan Monet Museum Paris
Photo by PIERRE ANDRE LECLERCQ [CC BY-SA 4.0]

The Claude Monet Collection at the Marmottan Monet Museum

The Marmottan museum owns and showcases over 300 impressionism and post-impressionism artworks. One hundred of these are Claude Monet paintings!!! The Monet collection came from Monet’s friends and son, Michel Monet. These Monet paintings are located in a room on the lower level of the Marmottan museum.

The Claude Monet works are organized in chronological order so that you can follow the progression of Monet’s artistic career. You will view paintings starting from his early, experimental years right up until his iconic water-lilies from his final years.

Many of his famous paintings are here at the Marmottan. You will view paintings from the Cathédrale de Rouen series, the Impression, Soleil Levant (1872), his iconic Water-Lilies painted from his garden in Giverny and more!

Marmottan Museum Monet Collection
Marmottan Museum Monet Collection
Photo by William Allen, Image Historian on Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Musee Marmottan Monet Also Houses the Largest Berthe Morisot Collection

Berthe Morisot was a successful and highly talented female impressionist. She belonged to the inner circle of the 19th century French impressionists. Morisot exhibited together with the impressionism giants such as Monet, Renoir, Degas, Manet and Pissarro. All these painters highly regarded her as an artist.

Morisot Painting of her Husband Eugene Manet
Berthe Morisot Painting of her Husband Eugene Manet

Why is Berthe Morisot Less Famous Than Her Male Counterparts?

Unlike many other artists, Berthe Morisot was a successful artist in her lifetime. She exhibited in the Paris Salon and art patrons sought out her paintings. However after she died, art historians forgot about her achievements for decades. They omitted her contribution to the impressionism movement and she was unheard of for a very long time.

Berthe Morisot came from a wealthy family and she did not need to sell her artworks in order to make a living. Most of her paintings stayed within the family and were not in public circulation. This further adding to her later obscurity.

Berthe Morisot’s descendants decided to donate a huge collection of her artworks to the Marmottan Monet museum. Today this museum houses the largest collection of Morisot’s paintings in the world. Her paintings are full of color and beauty. Here you will see 25 oil paintings, 75 water-colors and few pastels and drawings. It is a fabulous collection!

Berthe Morisot paintings at the Marmottan Monet Museum
Berthe Morisot Room at the Marmottan Museum
Photo by D Smith (CC BY-NC 2.0)

A Beautiful Collection of the Other Impressionism Giants

In addition to Monet’s and Morisot’s impressive art collections, the Marmottan Monet Museum showcases a fantastic collection of the famous impressionists such as Pissarro, Sisley, Renoir & Degas to name a few.

A Fascinating Story about Marmottan’s Greatest Art Theft in 1985

This is a true story!!

In 1985, five masked gunmen broke into the Marmottan Monet museum. Two of the robbers bought legitimate tickets and entered the museum as ordinary visitors. They then held 9 unarmed museum security guards and 40 visitors at gunpoint! The other three robbers removed the paintings from the walls. They then successfully left the museum and disappeared with the paintings !!

The robbers managed to steal nine impressionism paintings, including Claude Monet’s Impression Sunrise, the painting from which the impressionism movement got its name! The stolen paintings were valued at around 12.5 million dollars!!!!

Impressionism, Sunrise - Most famous Claude Monet Painting
Impressionism, Sunrise – Famous Claude Monet Painting stolen in the 1985 Robbery

These paintings were so famous that art critics realized that it would be impossible for the robbers to resell them. This led to speculation that perhaps a rich art collector instigated the robbery for his own private art collection!

Five Years Later the Paintings Were Found Safe & Sound

After a tip-off in 1990, the police were led to a professional Japanese gangster named Shuinichi Fujikuma. This man was a known criminal & had spent time in a French prison. It was in the prison that he and two other French criminals planned the art theft idea.

When the police raided Fujikuma’s home, they found a museum catalog and the stolen paintings circled! Five years after the robbery, the police found all nine paintings along with other stolen artworks.

Marmotten Museum security and all other art museums have beefed up their security systems since then!

Marmottan Museum - Claude Monet Water Lilies
Marmottan Museum – Claude Monet Water Lilies

Don’t be like the masses that overlook the Marmottan museum!

Make sure you visit this world-class Impressionism museum. It is far less exhausting than the amazing Musee D’Orsay and just as incredible!

Tip: If you have the energy & time, pop into the nearby picturesque Passy cemetery and visit the graves of Berthe Morisot and Édouard Manet .

Practical Information about the Marmottan Monet Museum

Times:

Open Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm (last admissions: 5.30 pm)
Late night: Thursday, to 9 pm (last admission: 8.30 pm)
Closed Mondays, 1 May, 25 December, and 1 January

Public Transport:

Métro: line 9, stop: La Muette or Ranelagh
RER: line C, stop: Boulainvilliers

Address: 2, rue Louis-Boilly, 75016 Paris – France

For more information about the museum and current temporary exhibitions showing, press here.