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 :. | The Emerald Pool | Wind River Mountains Nebraska Territory | Estes Park | Fishing_from_a_Canoe | Landscape Study, Yosemite California |
Related Artists:John Wolcott Adams
POORTER, Willem de
Dutch Baroque Era Painter, 1608-ca.1648
Dutch painter. His father, Pieter, came from Flanders to Haarlem, where in 1631 works by Willem were recorded for the first time. In 1634 Willem was registered in Haarlem as a master painter, and in 1635 Pieter Casteleijn was named as his pupil. As late as 1643 Pieter Abrams Poorter and Claes Coenraets began their studies with him in Haarlem. Willem is mentioned for the last time in the archives of the Haarlem Guild of St Luke in 1645, the year he left for Wijk bij Heusden. He supposedly studied under Rembrandt, together with his fellow townsman Jacob de Wet. There is no documentation to support this assumption, but a number of de Poorter's small-scale biblical and history paintings bear such a striking likeness to Rembrandt's biblical compositions of c. 1630 that the two hands are often confused. Rembrandt's Presentation in the Temple (1631; The Hague, Mauritshuis; see REMBRANDT VAN RIJN) was copied (Dresden, Gemeldegal. Alte Meister) by de Poorter, who also painted his own version (Kassel, Schloss Wilhelmsh?he). The lighting in de Poorter's Entombment (Guernsey, D. Cevat priv..) was also apparently inspired by Rembrandt's example. Since de Poorter's paintings were first reported in Haarlem in 1631, the year that Rembrandt moved from Leiden to Amsterdam, it seems likely that de Poorter received his training in the Leiden workshop, where Gerrit Dou had also been working since 1628. Lockey, Rowland
English Baroque Era Painter, active ca.1593-1616