At home with Monet and the American Impressionists.
By the end of the nineteenth century, a “colony” of Anglo-Saxon painters, mostly American, had settled in Giverny. They were drawn by the beauty of this picturesque village and its surrounding countryside, and by the presence of Calude Monet who had settled there in 1883. The link between the master of Impressionism and the new arrivals was strong: not only did Monet influence their painting style, but socially the artists lived in a close-knit community, enjoying moments of relaxation together before or after long hours spent at the easel.
For the first time, this book tells the little-known story of the everyday life of this community: daily meetings at the tennis courts; entertaining in the Butler household (Theodore Butler married Monet’s daughter); and the central role played by the Hôtel Baudy. The proprietors of this family-run hotel offered the artists a convivial meeting place, affordable lodgings, and good food, which the artists often paid for in paintings.
Madame Baudy adapted her fare so that porridge could be ordered for breakfast and Thanksgiving dinner enjoyed on the appropriate day. Here French chef Monique Mourgues has adapted over thirty recipes from the menus served at the Hôtel and from the Butler recipe book, including dandelion omelet and baked trout from the local river Epte.
Illustrated throughout with specially commissioned photographs of the painters’ homes and the Hôtel Baudy, alongside period paintings of country scenes and daily life in the impressionistic style, The Taste of Giverny allows the reader to savor the lively atmosphere and gastronomic delights of this small artists’ village at the turn of the last century.
The fate of Giverny, a quiet village in Normandy, was changed forever when Monet moved there in 1883. Picnics, games of tennis, outdoor teas, billiards tournaments, dinners, and masked balls . . . the numerous artists who flocked to this rural idyll pursued not only the art of painting, but also the art of living.
Here author Claire Joyes unveils the everyday activities of the community, the reactions of the locals to their new neighbors, and the central role played by Madame Baud, hotel proprietor, talented cook, and matchmaker.
Stunning original photographs featuring the artists’ studios, their houses, Giverny itself, and
the surrounding countryside, plunge us into the atmosphere of the village as it was at the height of the Impressionist period.
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