“Woman with a Parasol” – Madame Monet and Her Son, sometimes known as The Stroll (French: La Promenade) is an oil-on-canvas painting by Claude Monet from 1875. The Impressionist work depicts his wife Camille Monet and their son Jean Monet in the period from 1871 to 1877 while they were living in Argenteuil, capturing a moment on a stroll on a windy summer’s day.
“When a thing has been said and
said well, have no scruple.
Take it and copy it.”
Anatole France (1844 – 1924)
Monet’s light, spontaneous brushwork creates splashes of colour. Mrs Monet’s veil is blown by the wind, as is her billowing white dress; the waving grass of the meadow is echoed by the green underside of her parasol. She is seen as if from below, with a strong upward perspective, against fluffy white clouds in an azure sky. A boy, the Monets’ seven-year-old son, is placed further away, concealed behind a rise in the ground and visible only from the waist up, creating a sense of depth.
The work is a genre painting of an everyday family scene, not a formal portrait. The work was painted outdoors, en plein air, and quickly, probably in a single period of a few hours. It measures 100 × 81 centimetres (39 × 32 in), Monet’s largest work in the 1870s, and is signed “Monet 75” in the lower right corner.
The painting was one of 18 works by Monet exhibited at the second Impressionist exhibition in April 1876, at the gallery of Paul Durand-Ruel. Ten years later, Monet returned to a similar subject, painting a pair of scenes featuring his second wife’s daughter Suzanne Monet in 1886 with a parasol in a meadow at Giverny.