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 :. | Sunrise, Yosemite Valley | Fishing Boats at Capri | Western_Trail_the_Rockies | Tyrolean Landscape | Landscape with Deer |
Related Artists:John Opie
English Painter, 1761-1807,English painter. He was born in a tin-mining district, where his father was a mine carpenter. He had a natural talent for drawing and was taken up by an itinerant doctor, John Wolcot (the poet Peter Pindar, 1738-1819), who was an amateur artist and had a number of well-connected friends. Wolcot taught Opie the rudiments of drawing and painting, providing engravings for him to copy and gaining him access to country-house collections. Opie's early portraits, such as Dolly Pentreath (1777; St Michael's Mount, Cornwall, Lord St Levan priv. col.), are the work of a competent provincial painter and owe much to his study of engravings after portraits by Rembrandt. His attempts at chiaroscuro and impasto in Rembrandt's manner gave his pictures a maturity that clearly startled contemporary audiences expecting to see works by an untutored artist. Thus in 1780, when a picture by him was exhibited in London at the Society of Artists with the description 'a Boy's Head, an Instance of Genius, not having ever seen a picture', Opie was hailed as 'the Cornish Wonder'. When he himself arrived in London, where he was promoted by Wolcot and his paintings were exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1781 and 1782, he was seen as a phenomenon, impressing even Joshua Reynolds, who is reputed to have remarked that Opie was 'like Caravaggio and Velasquez in one'. Sebastiano Conca
Italian Baroque Era Painter , 1680-1764
was an Italian painter. He was born at Gaeta, then part of the Kingdom of Naples, and apprenticed in Naples under Francesco Solimena. In 1706, along with his brother Giovanni, who acted as his assistant, he settled at Rome, where for several years he worked in chalk only, to improve his drawing. He was patronized by the Cardinal Ottoboni, who introduced him to Clement XI, who commissioned a well-received Jeremiah painted for the church of St. John Lateran. Conca was knighted by the pope. He collaborated with Carlo Maratta in the Coronation of Santa Cecilia in the namesake's church of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere (1721-24). He was elected in 1718 to the Accademia di San Luca and its director in 1729-1731 and 1739-1741. His painting was strongly influenced by the Baroque painter Luca Giordano. Among Conca's pupils were Pompeo Battoni, Andrea Casali, Placido Campoli, Corrado Giaquinto, Gaetano Lapis, Salvatore Monosilio, Literio Paladini, Drancesco Preziao, Rosalba Maria Salvioni, Gasparo Serenari, and Agostino Masucci, He received widespread official acclaim and patronage. He worked for a time for the Savoy family in Turin on the Oratory of San Filippo and Santa Teresa, in the Venaria (1721-1725), for Basilica di Superga (1726), and Royal Palace (1733). He painted frescoes of Probatica, or Pool of Siloam, in the Ospedale di Santa Maria della Scala (hospital) of Siena. In Genoa, he painted large allegorical canvases of the Palazzo Lomellini-Doria (1738-1740). In 1739, he published a guide to painting: Ammonimenti (or Admonishments), which blended moralistic advice with technique. He returned to Naples in 1752, and enjoyed the royal patronage of Charles III. Percy tarrant