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 :. | Boats Ashore at Sunset | The Oregon Trail | Sunset in Californa Yosemite | Autumn in America, Oneida County | Sunset on the Mountain |
Related Artists:Victor Dubreuil
French-born American Painter, active 1886-ca.1900.Alexandre Cabanel
French Academic Painter, 1823-1889
French painter and teacher. His skill in drawing was apparently evident by the age of 11. His father could not afford his training, but in 1839 his departement gave him a grant to go to Paris. This enabled him to register at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts the following October as a pupil of Franeois-Edouard Picot. At his first Salon in 1843 he presented Agony in the Garden (Valenciennes, Mus. B.-A.) and won second place in the Prix de Rome competition (after Leon B?nouville, also a pupil of Picot) in 1845 with Christ at the Praetorium (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). Both Cabanel and Benouville were able to go to Rome, as there was a vacancy from the previous year. Cabanel's Death of Moses (untraced), an academic composition, painted to comply with the regulations of the Ecole de Rome, was exhibited at the Salon of 1852.Eugen Bracht
Swiss, 1842 - 1921