Adrien Moreau (1843-1906), “The Lily Pond,” oil on canvas, 12 3/4 x 18 1/4 in. © Christie’s 2017

In this ongoing series for Fine Art Today, we take a longer look at the history and features of a soon-to-be-available artwork of note. This week’s painting sparkles with color and is priced to sell.

Although Impressionist Claude Monet is perhaps the best-known lily pond painter, collectors may scratch and claw — figuratively — to get their hands on a stunning picture by 19th-century Frenchman Adrien Moreau (1843-1906).

Rather small at roughly 13 x 18 inches, Moreau’s “Lily Pond” makes a big visual impact. Lush foliage, trees, and cattails dominate the background as a glistening pond winds its way toward the viewer. Brilliantly captured are the subtle blue and white hues of the sky, which are most obviously stated in the pond’s reflections. Close observation reveals myriad colors. Although his painting is not rendered as loosely as Monet’s famed pictures, Moreau has created a delightful representation that retains some impressionistic qualities. The feathery brushwork found in the blooming lily pads and especially within the mid-ground cattails enlivens the scene and imbues the surface of the painting with a sense of life and vitality.

The market for Moreau’s work is highly variable. The current painting is estimated to sell for between $3,700 and $6,000 during Christie’s March 16 “19th-Century Sale” — a far cry from the nearly $70,000 earned in 2010 by Moreau’s “Concert d’amateurs dans un atelier d’artiste.” In 1996, his painting “Gypsy Dancer” realized 260,000 Euros.

The appetite for 19th-century works appears to be sharply on the rise, so the time might be right to strike and make this stunning work part of your collection. To learn more, visit Christie’s.

This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.


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