I find three main ideas behind this painting. And at the same time I find a unifying element behind those ideas. The three ideas are Life, Harmony and Infinite. The unifying element is Light. First, let's take a look at the three main ideas.
Life is represented by the presence of the green color of Nature in most of the surface of the canvas. Indeed, green is almost everywhere. The freehand drawing of Monet gives life to this painting in its thick texture. Green is the main color in different shades. This picture is full of life. There is no way to escape life when we look at this canvas. Life is energy, movement, invigorating power. We find life in the powerful presence of the green color. Nature is synonym of Life. Life becomes Nature, and Nature gives new meanings to this canvas full of vibrating energy. The fresh greens of the foliage take our mind to a journey of summer at its very beginning. But this is a glorious summer. Nature is thus joyous bursting out its greens in great abundance. Green is exuberant in this painting, and it undeniably gives the idea of Life.
Harmony gives coherence to the entire picture before our eyes. The shades of green, violet and yellow are intertwined in a harmonious spectrum of light. The arc of the Japanese bridge seems to be floating on top of the trees in a harmonious way. We only see the arc of the bridge, but it seems to be in the right place among the surrounding trees. The waterfalls and the banks of the pond full of lilies give the idea of unity among them. There is also harmony in the musical sense as the whole picture seems to be a real symphony of colors, lines, texture and shapes. It is a symphony in green, but it is also a symphony in which the presence of Nature itself is singing a song of joy, a song of glorious exuberance.
We feel a sense of Infinite when we quietly take a look at this painting by Claude Monet. Even though he was losing his sight, it seems that he painted by memory. His quick, sudden strokes invade the entire painting, and the final product is a picture where we feel the immensity of space in a limited surface. It feels to be immense from the spatial point of view. From the symbolic point of view, we can decode the meaning of the arc of the bridge. A bridge represents a transition. A transition from one form of life to another. So we can see that the transition is from this limited life to an infinite life. The symbol of the bridge is related to time, not space. But looking straight at the painting the spectator feels like he is looking at the Infinite. This is due to the mastery of Monet's brushstroke regarding the representation of space in the painting.
The common thread in these three ideas is Light. Monet treats light in a distinct way. Rather than painting the objects the way he sees them, Monet paints the light that those objects actually reflect. This is an impressionist position that Monet takes advantage of in this canvas. Life, Harmony and Infinite are represented by Monet with his personal touch. The thick texture and the sudden stroke are accomplished through a scrawling drawing. The final product seems to be a little blurred, and this effect is also due to the fact that Monet doesn't paint the shadows of the objects. So there is light all over the canvas. It is a luminous approach to the objects on the