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 :. | Sailboats on the Hudson at Irvington | Ein Sturm in den RockY Mountains,Mount Rosalie | Evening Glow at Lake Louise, Rocky Mountains, Canada | Multnomah Falls | During the mountain |
Related Artists:Louis Buvelot
Swiss-born Australian Painter
was a Swiss-born landscape painter who emigrated to Australia in 1865 and influenced the Heidelberg School of painters. Buvelot was born in Morges, Vaud, Switzerland, second son of Francois Simeon Buvelot, postal official, and his wife Jeanne-Louise nee Heizer, a school teacher. Louis Buvelot worked under Marc-Louis Arland at Lausanne, and from around 1834 continued his studies at Paris with Camille Flers, a well-known landscape painter of the day. After a few months there he migrated to Bahia, Brazil where he worked on his uncle's coffee plantation. In October 1840 Buvelot moved to Rio de Janeiro and attracted the notice of the emperor Dom Pedro II, who bought some of his pictures and decorated him with the Order of the Rose. In November 1843 Buvelot married Marie-Felicite, nee Lalouette (born 1816). Buvelot returned to Switzerland in 1852 and in 1856 was awarded a silver medal for a picture exhibited at Berne. Samuel Butler
British author , (1835 - 1902)
Samuel Butler was born on Dec. 4, 1835, in Langar, near Bingham, Nottinghamshire, the son of the local vicar. In a time of common paternal absolutism, his childhood seems to have been bleak and graceless. After taking a degree at Cambridge, he came into open conflict with his father over the question of his future profession, and at last he emigrated to New Zealand to become a sheep farmer. But though free of his father, he was not free of revolt, and the spirit of resentful rebelliousness marked much of his later life. In New Zealand he read Charles Darwin's Origin of Species and wrote a series of newspaper articles setting forth Darwin's ideas and ingeniously applying the evolutionary hypothesis to machines. Having made a modest fortune, he returned to England in 1864. Erewhon (1872), Butler's first book, is a mixture of satire, utopian theories, and serious speculation masked as whimsy. Set in the frame of a trip to an unknown land (Erewhon is an anagram of "no-where"), it has no real plot but is rather a description and discussion of the customs and institutions of Erewhon. In this land moral failings are treated as mental illness and cured by a "straightener," but physical illness and misfortune are considered crimes and severely punished. Children sign certificates absolving their parents of responsibility for their birth, and education is carried on in the College of Unreason. Butler's reflections on orthodox religion, begun in New Zealand, issued in The Fair Haven (1873), an ironic attempt to reconcile the New Testament with rationalistic criticism. In Life and Habit he returned to the question of evolution. In Evolution Old and New (1879), Unconscious Memory (1880), and Luck, or Cunning? (1887), he developed his ideas with an increasingly self-righteous resentment of what he conceived to be the Darwinians' deliberate concealment of the truth. Butler hoped to be able to restore will, intelligence, and design to a universe apparently made meaningless by the blind process of natural selection. The novel The Way of All Flesh, Butler's most famous work, was written between 1872 and 1885. It is the supposed biography of Ernest Pontifex, narrated by an older friend with an unrelenting candor deliberately affronting conventional pieties. Gilbert Stuart
Gilbert Stuart was born in North Kingston, R.I., on Dec. 3, 1755. At the age of 13 or 14 he studied art with the Scottish painter Cosmo Alexander in Newport. With Alexander he made a tour of the South and a journey to Edinburgh, where Alexander died in 1772. For about a year Stuart remained, poverty-stricken, in Scotland, but finally, working as a sailor, he managed to get back to America. There he executed a few portraits in a hard limner fashion. With the Revolutionary War threatening, his family, who had Tory sympathies, fled to Nova Scotia, and Stuart sailed for London, where he remained from 1775 to 1787. For the first 4 or 5 years, Stuart served as the first assistant of American expatriate painter Benjamin West, who had rescued him from poverty. From the first, Stuart showed an interest only in portraiture and had no desire to go into the branch of history painting West practiced. After his apprenticeship, Stuart became London's leading portrait painter, next to Joshua Reynolds and Thomas Gainsborough, whose style he emulated, as in a rare full-length portrait of William Grant of Congalton as The Skater (ca. 1782). For a while Stuart lived in splendor, but being a bad businessman and a profligate spender, he was in constant debt. He lived in Ireland from 1787 to 1792 and then returned to America to make a fortune,