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 :. | Nassau Harbor | Beach at Nassau | Haying, Conway Meadows | Evening on the Prairie | View of the Parliament Buildings from the Grounds of Rideau Halls |
Related Artists:Adrian Ludwig Richter
German painter, printmaker and illustrator. He ranks with Moritz von Schwind as the most important representative of late Romantic painting and printmaking in Germany. In contrast to the work of such leading masters of early Romanticism as Philipp Otto Runge and Caspar David Friedrich, which was ambitious in content and innovative in form, Richter's art was more modest in its aims, in line with the restrained intellectual climate of the Biedermeier period. Jules-elie delaunay
French Neoclassical Painter, 1828-1891Henry William Pickersgill
English Painter, 1782-1875
was an English painter specialising in portraits. He was a Royal Academician for almost fifty years, and painted many of the most notable figures of his time. Born in London, Pickersgill was adopted in his youth by a Mr Hall, a silk manufacturer in Spitalfields, who financed his schooling and then took him into the family business. However, when war caused difficult trading conditions, Pickersgill opted to develop his talent for painting into a career, and was a pupil of landscape artist George Arnald between 1802 - 1805 before entering the Royal Academy Schools as a student in November 1805.His early subjects were varied and included landscapes and classical and historical themes, but he eventually settled to portraiture as his speciality. His first exhibit at the Royal Academy was a portrait of his benefactor Mr Hall, and during his lifetime he showed a total of 384 paintings there. He was elected to associate membership of the Academy in November 1822 and full membership in February 1826. Pickersgill was one of the pre-eminent portrait painters of his day. William Wordsworth, George Stephenson, Jeremy Bentham, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Lord Nelson, the Duke of Wellington and Faraday were among the many notable people who sat for him. He famously painted author James Silk Buckingham and his wife Elizabeth in Arab costume in 1816, reflecting Buckingham's own travels in the East as well as the fashion of the times for the Orient. The National Portrait Gallery, London has over 50 of his portraits in its collection, including 16 original oils and 35 engravings after him, along with a small number of portraits of Pickersgill himself by others. From 1856?C64 he was librarian of the Royal Academy. He retired from the institution in December 1872, and died at his home in Blandford Square, London at the age of 93. Pickersgill's brother Richard, son Henry Hall and nephew Frederick Richard were also painters.