AQA quiz: Monet x Manet

Check out some striking curiosities to never confuse the two impressionist French painters with similar names again

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
Monet's Self-Portrait on the left and Manet's Self-Portrait on the right

It is very common for Édouard Manet and Claude Monet to be confused around. The two have a lot in common and, to complicate matters even more, their surnames (by which they are best known) are extremely similar. Therefore, saying that he loved “that painting of water lilies by Manet” when he is actually referring to Claude Monet is something shared by many people.

There are those who think that this is something for people who are not directly involved with art on a regular basis. But it's not true, as they say: it happens in the best families! Even because it's not today that this happens! The two were often confused, because of the name, by their peers and by critics who frequented the art salons where they used to exhibit in Paris at the end of the 19th century.

See below some curiosities about both to try not to get confused anymore!

Both are impressionist painters, but the impressionism movement was born out of the work of one of them! Who is the “founder” of the movement?

The name of the movementu derived from the title of a painting that Monet exhibited at the First Impressionist Exhibition in 1874 entitled “Impression Sunrise”. Of all the ones exhibited there, including eight others by him, this one became the most famous, as it was quite attractive to critics.

Which of them hated the other, at first, precisely because they got their names mixed up?

Before they became friends and even spent vacations together, there was a certain spark between Monet and Manet. That's because, more than us today, people confused the two a lot because of their names. And that made Manet angry with his quasi-namesake. This story was confirmed by Claude Monet in an interview, who said that at first he was hated by Édouard Manet because of the confusions

Which of the two was considered a controversial painter for including nude women in some paintings?
What do you mean he dared to submit to the Paris Salon of 1983 a painting that showed a naked woman and another not so well dressed taking a bath in the presence of two men in a garden? Considered shocking and scandalous, Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe it was later exhibited at the Salon des Refusés that same year. Two years later he painted Olympia, so feared by moralists at the time. This is because the figure represented there, besides being naked, was that of a prostitute. We talk more about it in the #AnáliseAQA. Click here to view.

Edouard Manet, Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe.

Who portrayed the other's family during a tour of Argenteuil?

In the summer of 1874 they met several times and on one of those occasions The Monet Family in Their Garden at Argenteuil it was painted by Manet! In contrast, Monet later painted Manet at his easel.

'Edouard Manet, The Monet Family in Their Garden at Argenteuil

Which one used to paint the same thing over and over again?


The artist positioned himself several times in the same place at different times of the day to experiment with light and color. This not only in relation to the landscape, but also to objects.

Monet's experiments in the same landscape!

Can you identify who each of these brushstrokes is from?

The one on the left is by Monet and the one on the right is by Manet.
Manet had one of his longest and most fluid strokes, with rapidity in the movement of his hand. Often they were more vertical strokes.
Despite also being quick, Monet's brushstrokes are shorter and stronger, in which there is an impression of color mixing between them.

Which of the two tried to drown himself in the Seine?

France was experiencing a very strong economic crisis when the artist's first child was born. Frustrated with the probable impossibility of being able to support his family with the work he had, he tried to commit suicide by throwing himself into the Seine River, in Paris, but he did not reach the end.

Claude Monet, Voiliers sur la Seine, 1874.

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