The Allure of Painting Water Lilies

The Allure of Painting Water Lilies

A Collection of Historic and Contemporary Work

Water Lilies (Nenuphar), 1895, Isaac Levitan
Water Lilies                  1895                  Isaac Levitan

   Monet rules on-line searches for “water lily paintings”. It’s difficult to scroll past all the citations for articles about his nymphaea masterpieces. Not only did Monet present a new way of seeing and painting, he also featured in his monumental water lily paintings recently hybridized and therefore little-known varieties of the exotic flowers. But artists beyond Monet have also been mesmerized by the water lily. Floating on a reflective water surface, the subject lures artists with the challenges of capturing light bouncing off water, leaves breaking the surface, translucent depths giving glimpses of stems and roots - a cornucopia of intertwining imagery.

   We were interested in looking at the different interpretations of the water lily other artists had created. We put together this collection of paintings by historic artists and those by some of our favorite contemporary artists—all inspired by the water lily.

Historical Water Lily Paintings


American Water Lily, William Jacob Hays   Still Life with Water Lily, 1872, David Johnson (cropped)
    American Water Lily   William Jacob Hays           Still Life with Water Lily   1872   David Johnson

Forest Lake with Blooming Water Lilies and Insects, Anthonore Christensen
Forest Lake with Blooming Water Lilies and Insects             Anthonore Christensen

Water Lilies on the Marne, Henri Biva   Water Lilies, 1878, Theodore Robinson
Water Lilies on the Marne   Henri Biva                 Water Lilies   1878   Theodore Robinson

Brood of Ducklings Among Yellow Water Lilies, 1917, Bruno Liljefors
Brood of Ducklings Among Yellow Water Lilies        1917        Bruno Liljefors

Forest Pond with Water Lilies, Walter Moras

Forest Pond with Water Lilies          Walter Moras

Pink Water Lily, 1920, Joseph Stella   Red Water Lily of Southern India, 1878, Marianne North
Pink Water Lily   1920   Joseph Stella        Red Water Lily of Southern India   1878   Marianne North

Pond with Water Lilies, 1893, Julius Klever
Pond with Water Lilies        1893        Julius Klever

Water Lilies, 1895, Mikhail Vrubel
Water Lilies        1895        Mikhail Vrubel

Water Lilies, Blanche Horschede Monet
Water Lilies             Blanche Horschede Monet

Water Lilies, Abbott Handerson Thayer   Water Lily Among Pads, 1879, John La Farge
Water Lilies   Abbott Handerson Thayer          Water Lily Among Pads   1879   John La Farge

Water Lilies, Nenuphar, 1895, Isaac Levitan
Water Lilies (Nenuphar)        1895        Isaac Levitan

Water Lilies Study for the Youth and a Mermaid, Albert Edelfelt
Water Lily Study for the Youth and a Mermaid        Albert Edelfelt

Water Lily, ca. 1910 ,Vaclav Radimsky
Water Lily        ca. 1910        Vaclav Radimsky

Yerres on the Pond, Water Lilies, 1871-78, Gustave Caillebotte
Yerres on the Pond, Water Lilies        1871-78        Gustave Caillebotte

Contemporary Water Lily Paintings

Howard Friedland

Morning in Giverny, 24 x 30", Oil, © Howard Friedland
Morning in Giverny        24 x 30"        Oil        © Howard Friedland
Best of Show at the 2008 Oil Painters of America National Show

Le Bateau au Repos (Boat at Rest), 16 x 20", Oil, © Howard Friedland
Le Bateau au Repos (Boat at Rest)        16 x 20"        © Howard Friedland
Finalist in the Raymar Online Competition

Meditation, 24 x 18", Oil, © Howard Friedland
Meditation        24 x 18"        © Howard Friedland

See more of Howard Friedland's work here

Mary Pettis

The Enchanted Lake - Lilies under the Footbridge, 28 x 48" Oil, © Mary Pettis
The Enchanted Lake - Lilies under the Footbridge        28 x 48"        © Mary Pettis

The Cycle of Lilies, 29 x 48",  Oil, © Mary Pettis
The Cycle of Lilies                29 x 48"                © Mary Pettis

Placido, 28 x 48", Oil, © Mary Pettis
Placido                28 x 48"                © Mary Pettis

Time Stands Still, 48 x 30", Oil, © Mary Pettis
Time Stands Still        48 x 30"        © Mary Pettis

See more of Mary Pettis's work here.

Marc Dalessio

Water Lilies, (sight-size painting), © Marc Dalessio
Water Lilies (sight size painting)                         Marc Dalessio

See more of Marc Dalessio's work here.

Matthew Richter

You Have Changed, 40 x 30", © Matthew Richter
You Have Changed          40 x 30"          © Matthew Richter

The Glow, 18 x 40", Oil, © Matthew Richter
The Glow                    18 x 40"                    © Matthew Richter

See more of Matthew Richter's work here.

John Hulsey

Nymphaeas II, Watercolor,  21 x 27", © John Hulsey
Nymphaea II                     21 x 27"          WC           © John Hulsey

Nymphaea III, Watercolor, 21 x 27", © John Hulsey
Nymphaea III                     21 x 27"        WC             © John Hulsey

See more of John Hulsey's work here.


Copyright Hulsey Trusty Designs, L.L.C. (except where noted). All rights reserved.
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