Water Lilies, 1916-19. Claude Monet. Oil on canvas. Gift of Louise Reinhardt Smith, 1983.
As part of his extensive gardening plans at Giverny, Monet had a pond dug and planted with lilies in 1893. From 1899 on, he repeatedly turned to the subject, attempting to capture every observation, impression, and reflection of the flowers and water. By the time he began this work in the late teens, Monet had achieved a completely new, fluid, and somewhat audacious style of painting in which the water-lily pond became the point of departure for an almost abstract art.