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 :. | Storm in the Rocky Mountains, Mt Rosalie | Newbraska Wasatch Mountains | A View in the Bahamas | Attack on a Picket Post | Passing Storm over the Sierra Nevada |
Related Artists:MALOUEL, Jean
Netherlandish Gothic Era Painter, ca.1365-1415
North Netherlandish painter, active in Burgundy. He was the son of the heraldic artist Willem Maelwael and uncle of the Limbourg brothers. First recorded as a painter in 1382, he is then documented on 20 September 1396 for a commission to provide designs for textiles with decorative armorial bearings for Queen Isabeau of Bavaria, wife of Charles VI, for which he received payment on 27 March 1397. By 5 August 1397 he was in Dijon, where he succeeded Jean de Beaumetz as court painter and Valet de Chambre to Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy. Malouel was highly paid, and his annual pension was considerably more than that of Beaumetz or of the sculptor Claus Sluter. One of the first works Malouel produced for the Duke was a painting of the Apostles with St Anthony (untraced), paid for on 11 November 1398, which the Duke is known to have kept in his private oratory. On 18 March 1398 wooden supports were purchased for Malouel to paint five large altarpieces for the Charterhouse of Champmol, outside Dijon. The subject-matter of the paintings is not specified in the document, although the dimensions of the panels are given. The Martyrdom of St Denis (Paris, Louvre; for illustration see BELLECHOSE, HENRI) has been identified as one of these five panels, on the basis of its possible provenance and its dimensions, which correspond approximately to those given in the document. In May 1416, however, Henri Bellechose received pigments to 'perfect' a painting of the Life of St Denis, and this document, in conjunction with the earlier one, has been interpreted to suggest that Bellechose completed a work left unfinished by Malouel. Pierre etienne theodore rousseau
Paris 1812-Barbizon 1867
French painter of the Barbizon school, was born in Paris, of a bourgeois family which included one or two artists.At first he received a business training, but soon displayed aptitude for painting. Although his father regretted the decision at first, he became reconciled to his son leaving business, and throughout the artist's career (for he survived his son) was a sympathizer with him in all his conflicts with the Paris Salon authorities. Theodore Rousseau shared the difficulties of the romantic painters of 1830 in securing for their pictures a place in the annual Paris exhibition. The whole influence of the classically trained artists was against them, and not until 1848 was Rousseau adequately presented to the public. He had exhibited one or two unimportant works in the Salon of 1831 and 1834, but in 1836 his great work "La descente des vaches" was rejected by the vote of the classic painters; and from then until after the revolution of 1848 he was persistently refused. He was not without champions in the press, and under the title of "le grand refus" he became known through the writings of Thor, the critic who afterwards resided in England and wrote under the name of Burger. During these years of artistic exile Rousseau produced some of his finest pictures: "The Chestnut Avenue", "The Marsh in the Landes" (now in the Louvre), "Hoar-Frost" (now in America); and in 1851, after the reorganization of the Salon in 1848, he exhibited his masterpiece, "The Edge of the Forest" (also in the Louvre), a picture similar in treatment to, but slightly varied in subject from, the composition called "A Glade in the Forest of Fontainebleau", in the Wallace Collection at Hertford House, London. Up to this period Rousseau had lived only occasionally at Barbizon, but in 1848 he took up his residence in the forest village, and spent most of his remaining days in the vicinity. He was now at the height of his artistic power, and was able to obtain fair sums for his pictures (but only about one-tenth of their value thirty years after his death), and his circle of admirers increased. He was still ignored by the authorities, for while Narcisse Virgilio Diaz was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 1851, Rousseau was left undecorated at this time, but was nominated shortly afterwards. At the Exposition Universelle of 1853, where all Rousseau's rejected pictures of the previous twenty years were gathered together, his works were acknowledged to form one of the finest of the many splendid groups there exhibited. But during his lifetime Rousseau never really conquered French taste, and after an unsuccessful sale of his works by auction in 1861, Lepic Ludovic Napoleon