About this artwork

Monet produced this work on the Normandy coast at Etretat, famous for its unusual rock formations such the Porte d’Aval (shown here), the Porte d’Amont and the Manneporte. Brought up in nearby Le Havre, he was familiar from childhood with these dramatic limestone cliffs and returned to the area at various times over his long career. Etretat was fast developing as a tourist site, but this picture was produced at a time when Monet had abandoned modern, urban subjects in order to focus on natural phenomena and repeated motifs executed on the spot. He produced several versions of the Porte d’Aval, mostly in oil, seen from different viewpoints. Drawn from a high view point, the scene has a stark simplicity, the use of muted tones of blue, cream and brown signal the onset of evening.

  • title:
    Etretat, the Needle Rock and Porte d'Aval, the Cap d'Antifer (Cliffs at Etretat)
  • accession number:
    D 5672
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • subject:
  • glossary:
  • materials:
    Pastel on paper
  • date created:
    About 1885
  • measurements:
    39.00 x 23.00 cm (framed: 57.90 x 40.90 x 3.30 cm)
  • credit line:
    Accepted in lieu of Inheritance Tax by H M Government from the estate of Miss Valerie Middleton and allocated to the Scottish National Gallery, 2016.

Claude Monet

Claude Monet