Beyeler celebrates 20 years, with Monet

Monet, View of Bordighiera, 1884, The Armand Hammer Collection, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles

Twenty years ago, Ernst Beyeler was inaugurating his foundation in Riehen, near Basel, Switzerland. Architect Renzo Piano delivered a masterpiece for what is considered one of the greatest private collections of art in the world. The art dealer died in 2010 but Fondation Beyeler is well alive with a Monet show which has attracted 100 000 visitors in two months.

Sunset on the Seine, 1880, Pola Museum of Art, Pola Art Foundation

If you have never been to Riehen, now is the occasion (until May 28 for Monet) to see spectacular paintings by the master of waterlilies. Sixty paintings from around the world with another fifteen works coming from private collections. The most visited art museum in Switzerland has a knack for creating stunning shows with artists who are world known, and this is no exception. Selected in the period between his Impressionist time and the waterlilies (1880 to 1900), the paintings concentrate on light, shade and reflections.

House of the customs officer, 1882, Harvard Art Museums / Fogg Museum

The exhibition starts with multiple views along the Seine, trees inspired by his Japanese etchings, the Mediterranean landscapes. It then moves to Belle Ile en mer, the magical island on the Atlantic coast of France and Turner inspired views of the Thames.

On April 7, French actor Lambert Wilson will read from Monet’s letters and all year round entrance is free for visitors under 25.

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