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 :. | A River Estuary | Niagara | Moat Mountain, Intervale, New Hampshire | A Storm in t he Rocky Mountains,Mt,Rosalie | Lake in the Rockies |
Related Artists:Francois Lemoine
Meulen, Steven van der
Flemish Northern Renaissance Painter, active 1543-1568
Netherlandish painter active in England. He was a pupil of Willem van Cleve the younger (c. 1530-1564) in 1543 and was admitted to the Antwerp Guild of St Luke in 1552; by 1560 he had travelled to London, and he was naturalized in 1562. Van der Meulen brought with him a deep knowledge of the portrait style of Anthonis Mor. This sombre, shadowed style appealed to patrons at the English court who could not travel to Antwerp to sit to the greater artist. Early in 1561 an English merchant, John Dymoch, had visited Sweden in connection with negotiations for a marriage between Queen Elizabeth and Erik XIV, taking with him a Netherlandish painter described as 'Master Staffan', and it seems likely that this was van der Meulen. The King was much pleased with the resulting portrait of himself, for which he paid 100 dalerBORDONE, Paris
Italian High Renaissance Painter, 1500-1571
Bordone was born at Treviso, but had moved to Venice by late adolescence. He apprenticed briefly and unhappily (according to Vasari) with Titian. Vasari may have met the elder Bordone.
From the 1520s, we have works by Bordone including the Holy Family in Florence, Sacra Conversazione with Donor (Glasgow), and Holy Family with St. Catherine (Hermitage Museum). The St. Ambrose and a Donor (1523) is now in Brera. In 1525-6, Bordone painted an altarpiece for the church of S. Agostino in Crema, a Madonna with St. Christopher and St George (now in the Palazzo Tadini collection at Lovere). A second altarpiece, Pentecost, is now in Brera gallery.
In 1534-5, he painted his large-scale masterpiece for the Scuola di San Marco a canvas of the Fisherman delivering the Marriage Ring of Venice to the Doge (Accademia). However, when this latter painting is compared to the near-contemoporary, and structurally similar, Presentation of the Virgin, Bordone's limitations, his use of superior perspective, which creates dwarfed distant perspectives, and limited coloration relative to the brilliant tints of Titian.
Bordone is best at his smaller cabinet pieces, showing half-figures, semi-undressed men and women from mythology or religious stories in a muscular interaction despite the crowded space.