When Collecting Is a Fine Art

A young artist named Claude Monet watched dawn break over the harbor of Le Havre one day in 1872. He called his painting of that experience Impression: Sunrise, and in so doing christened another new dawn: Impressionism. He belonged to an evolving artistic movement that rejected straightforward representation and instead refracted a world of luminosity and color. The sea- and skyscapes of Le Havre and the surrounding Normandy region as a whole inspired him. Other light-minded artists — Edgar Degas and Johan Barthold Jongkind among them — were also drawn to the area. Now, thanks to the recent donation of more...

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