Introducing Claude Monet: The Revised Catalogue Raisonné; The Pastels

As part of its long-term goal to update the entirety of the Monet catalogue raisonné, the Wildenstein Plattner Institute has released its latest online publication, Claude Monet: The Revised Catalogue Raisonné; The Pastels. This dynamic resource features information on 110 works in pastel, with links to historic publications on the artist. Presented in a searchable format and accessible for free on the Institute’s website,, The Pastels will be continuously updated with new information as works are reviewed by the WPI’s Monet Committee.

The Pastels marks the inaugural release of the Wildenstein Plattner Institute’s on-going project to revise the entirety of Wildenstein’s landmark Monet Catalogue raisonné. Since the last edition of Wildenstein’s Monet catalogue raisonné was released in 1996, a wealth of new information regarding these works has emerged, heightening the demand for a   reinvestigation of these artworks. “Daniel Wildenstein’s original Monet catalogue raisonné has been the definitive resource for information on the artist for decades, and the responsibility for maintaining this publication now rests with the WPI,” says Elizabeth Gorayeb, Executive Director of the WPI. “Publishing a revision to The Pastels aligns with our mission to enhance this critical resource with the most reliable and up-to-date information so that it remains relevant to future generations

Claude Monet, “Étretat, l’Aiguille et la falaise d’Aval” (1885), pastel on paper, Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris.

The last overview of the pastels was published by Daniel Wildenstein in 1991. The WPI’s reassessment of this oeuvre includes 13 newly-discovered pastels and crucial updates and amendments, along with new color photographs of works that have been presented to the WPI’s Monet committee. Works in pastel that have been accepted, but not yet physically examined and verified by the committee, are featured in black-and-white and with a link for owners to contact the committee to schedule a review. 

The updatable feature of the digital catalogue raisonné will enable WPI to publish their decisions and verified information soon after committee inspection and review. Readers of the catalogue raisonné will be able to see the committee’s progress on the catalogue raisonné research to date, and will not have to wait for the entirety of the project to be completed before seeing the results. The WPI’s letters of determination about a work’s inclusion or exclusion, which were traditionally issued in advance of forthcoming publications and often requested by owners as proof of status, will no longer be necessary.

In addition to the catalogue raisonné, the WPI is also releasing a companion publication on the pastels by Monet scholar and curator, Géraldine Lefebvre. This digital catalogue, Claude Monet, les pastels. Un recueil d’essais et de commentaires pour accompagner le catalogue raisonné, can be translated into any language from the original French and features critical essays on select pastels, as well as information on the major themes and early collectors of these works. The link to this e-catalogue, created with Quire, an open-source software provided by the Getty, can be found on the homepage for the catalogue raisonné.

The WPI produced The Pastels using the digital catalogue raisonné platform created by Navigating.Art. This new compendium now joins the WPI’s on-line roster of accessible resources and catalogue raisonné projects, including those of Paul Gauguin and Tom Wesselmann, and will be expanded to include Monet’s paintings in a future release. To this end, the WPI’s Monet Committee is reviewing more than 2000 works published in the original five-volume Wildenstein catalogue raisonné, and is accepting requests for research and submission on an ongoing basis.

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