German-born American Hudson River School Painter, 1830-1902
Bierstadt was born in Solingen, Germany. His family moved to New Bedford, Massachusetts, in 1833. He studied painting with the members of the D??sseldorf School in D??sseldorf, Germany from 1853 to 1857. He taught drawing and painting briefly before devoting himself to painting.
Bierstadt began making paintings in New England and upstate New York. In 1859, he traveled westward in the company of a Land Surveyor for the U.S. government, returning with sketches that would result in numerous finished paintings. In 1863 he returned west again, in the company of the author Fitz Hugh Ludlow, whose wife he would later marry. He continued to visit the American West throughout his career.
Though his paintings sold for princely sums, Bierstadt was not held in particularly high esteem by critics of his day. His use of uncommonly large canvases was thought to be an egotistical indulgence, as his paintings would invariably dwarf those of his contemporaries when they were displayed together. The romanticism evident in his choices of subject and in his use of light was felt to be excessive by contemporary critics. His paintings emphasized atmospheric elements like fog, clouds and mist to accentuate and complement the feel of his work. Bierstadt sometimes changed details of the landscape to inspire awe. The colors he used are also not always true. He painted what he believed is the way things should be: water is ultramarine, vegetation is lush and green, etc. The shift from foreground to background was very dramatic and there was almost no middle distance
Nonetheless, his paintings remain popular. He was a prolific artist, having completed over 500 (possibly as many as 4000) paintings during his lifetime, most of which have survived. Many are scattered through museums around the United States. Prints are available commercially for many. Original paintings themselves do occasionally come up for sale, at ever increasing prices. Related Paintings of Albert Bierstadt :. | Ferns_and_Rocks_on_an_Embankment | Sunset, Deer and River | Yosemite Valley | Buffalo Head | Storm in the Rocky Mountains, Mt Rosalie |
Related Artists:SARACENI, Carlo
Italian painter, Roman school (b. 1579, Venezia, d. 1620, Venezia). Italian painter. He is best known for his jewel-like paintings representing sacred and secular themes, which combine a delicate technique inspired by Adam Elsheimer with a note of observed realism owed to Caravaggio. He also painted altarpieces and worked in fresco. Prospero Fontana
(1512 - 1597) was an Italian painter of the late Renaissance.
Fontana was born in Bologna, and became a pupil of Innocenzo da Imola. He afterwards worked for Perin del Vaga in the Palazzo Doria in Genoa. Towards 1550, it is reported that Michelangelo introduced him to Pope Julius III as a portrait-painter; and he was pensioned at the pontifical court. He later joined Vasari's studio in Florence, and worked in frescoes at the Palazzo Vecchio (1563-65). He is an early representative of the Bolognese school of painting. Sabbatini, Sammachini and Passerotti were three of his principal pupils or colleagues. His daughter, Lavinia Fontana, was also a prominent painter of mostly conventional religious canvases.
Returning to Bologna, after doing some work in Fontainebleau (France) and in Genoa, he opened a school of art, in which he became briefly the preceptor of Lodovico and Agostino Carracci. He has left a large quantity of work in Bologna. His altarpiece of the Adoration of the Magi, in the church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, being considered his masterpiece. It is not unlike the style of Paul Veronese. He died in Rome in 1597.
John Closterman (1660-1711) (also spelled Cloosterman, Klosterman), portrait-painter, born in Osnabruck, the son of an artist, who taught him the rudiments of design.
In 1679 he went to Paris, accompanied by his countryman Tiburen, and there worked under Francois de Troy. In 1681 he came to England, and painted draperies for John Riley, at whose death, in 1691, Closterman finished several of his portraits. This recommended him to the Duke of Somerset, but he lost his favour on account of a dispute about a picture of Guercino, specially acquired for his grace, and which was afterwards purchased by Lord Halifax. In 1696 he was invited to the court of Spain, and executed the portraits of the king and queen; he also went to Italy twice, and made several acquisitions of works of art. On returning to England he obtained considerable employment, and married an Englishwoman. He buried his wife, Hannah, on 27 January 1702. According to Arnold Houbraken, he later took a mistress, who then ruined him by her extravagant habits, and ultimately left him in a state of dejection of body and mind that led to his ultimate decline. Jacob Campo Weyerman, who took much of his biographical material from Houbraken, states "Closterman had taken a beautiful mistress who, while he was away in the country, robbed him of his valuables and disappeared, actions which drove the painter into madness".
He died in 1711, and was buried in Covent Garden churchyard.