Thursday, August 26, 2010

New book on Monet's Camille published!

Finally! MONET AND HIS MUSE: CAMILLE MONET IN THE ARTIST's LIFE is available on Amazon. I have been waiting a long time for this critical study by esteemed clinical psychologist and art historian Mary Mathews Gedo. When I began to write my novel I wrote to the foremost American scholar on Monet and I asked, "What can you tell me about Camille?" and he said, "Very little." I am so excited to read this!

From the publisher's description: "And then—Camille. Entering Monet’s life when he was still a young man, becoming first his model and then mistress and then—finally—his wife, Camille Doncieux always fulfilled the function of muse, even after her life had ended, as Monet not only painted her one last time on her deathbed, but preserved her memory through the gardens he planted at his home in Giverny." That was just how I saw it as I wrote, with only scraps of diaries and his portraits of her and a few mentions in their friends' letters to guide me.

Amazon link for the scholarly book is above and here is the link to my novel CLAUDE & CAMILLE: A NOVEL OF MONET for a fictional treatment of this long-lost muse.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Berthe Morisot's last letter to her daughter Julie

The beautiful and exquisitely talented Berthe Morisot had already been widowed for some time and was raising her only daughter Julie with the help of friends. Julie was only seventeen when her mother, fatally ill with pneumonia, left her this last heart-rending letter:

"My little Julie, I love you as I die. I will still love you even when I am dead...I had hoped to live until you were married. Work and be good as you have always been; you have not caused me one sorrow in your little life. Do not cry; I love you more than I can tell you...."

115 years after it was written, the love of the great artist for her only child moves me very deeply.