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 :. | View of the Parliament Buildings from the Grounds of Rideau Halls | Tropical Landscape | Beach at Nassau | Sierra_Nevada_aka_From_the_Head_of_the_Carson_River, California | Pikes Peak, Rocky Mountains |
Related Artists:Walter Langley.RI
American painter of Scottish birth. In 1879 Kane emigrated to western Pennsylvania. He worked as a bricklayer, coal miner, steel worker and carpenter in the Ohio River valley and, in 1890, began to sketch local scenery. After losing his leg in a train accident in 1891, he was employed painting railway carriages. When his son died in 1904, Kane left his family and spent years wandering and working in odd jobs; his earliest surviving paintings date from around 1910. Settling in Pittsburgh, he worked as a house painter and in his spare time painted portraits, religious subjects, the city's urban landscape and memories of his Scottish childhood. In 1927 the jury of the Carnegie International Exhibition, Pittsburgh, encouraged by the painter-juror Andrew Dasburg (b 1887), accepted Kane's Scene in the Scottish Highlands (1927; Pittsburgh, PA, Carnegie Mus. A.). Kane's success, at first considered a hoax by the press, was based on the modernist interest in primitive and folk art. His work was regarded as non-academic and boldly original, and he became the first contemporary American folk artist to be recognized by a museum. Larimer Avenue Bridge (1932; Pittsburgh, PA, Carnegie Mus. A.) is characteristic of his style with its meticulous detail, flat colour and dominant green and red. Though he sketched and painted on the site, Kane freely transposed pictorial elements to create a more pleasing composition. This innate compositional sense is evident in his Self-portrait (1929; New York, MOMA). Jonas Akerstrom