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 :. | Prong-Horned Antelope | Bridal Veil Falls, Yosemite | Liberty Cap, Yosemite | The Great Trees, Mariposa Grove, California | The Last of the Buffalo |
Related Artists:CASTIGLIONE, Giovanni Benedetto
Italian Baroque Era Painter, ca.1609-1664
Painter, printmaker and draughtsman. Most of his works are scenes of the journeys of the patriarchs (e.g. Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob), drawn from the book of Genesis and filled with animals and still-life detail. His oeuvre also, however, includes many spectacular mythological and religious compositions set in expansive landscapes, and for these he found inspiration in Classical mythology, ancient history, Aesop's Fables, 16th-century Italian literature and the lives of the saints. Early biographers claim that he was also a prolific portrait painter, but few examples, save the so-called portrait of Gianlorenzo Bernini (c. 1648-50; Genoa, Pal. Bianco), have been conclusively identified. His surviving subjects reveal his interest in magic and metamorphosis and in philosophical questions such as the frailty of human life, the inevitability of death and the search for truth.
John varley jnr
Leon-Matthieu Cochereau Location