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 :. | Bahamas Harbour | Among the Sierra Nevada Mountains | Hetch Hetchy Canyon | A Storm in t he Rocky Mountains,Mt,Rosalie | Bavarian_Landscape |
Related Artists:Arkhip Ivanovich Kuindzhi
Russian Painter, 1842-1910
Ukrainian painter, active in Russia. Initially self-taught as an artist, he twice failed the St Petersburg Academy's entrance examination, despite coaching by the marine painter Ivan Aivazovsky. In 1868, however, he was accepted as an external student. He persevered against conservative prejudice and poverty throughout his early career, supplementing his income by retouching photographs. In his early landscape paintings he often sought to capture seasonal moods, as in Autumn Mud (1872; St Petersburg, Rus. Mus.). A more human focus, however, is noticeable after 1874, when he joined the travelling exhibitions society the WANDERERS: the village houses dominate the landscape setting in Evening in Ukraine (1878; St Petersburg, Rus. Mus.). Kuindzhi's principal interest, however, was in lighting, and he obtained striking effects by using vivid colours, chiaroscuro contrasts and simple but cleverly conceived designs. Spectacular paintings, such as the Birch Grove (1879; Moscow, Tret'yakov Gal.), greatly moved contemporary viewers. Through years of experimentation, Kuindzhi developed a highly original technique, which he applied to an increasingly typical, at times almost visionary, treatment of subjects such as snow-covered mountains and moonlight (e.g. Elbnis: Moonlit Night, 1890-95; Moscow, Tret'yakov Gal.). Due to imperfections in the paints he used, many of his canvases soon darkened.Georges desmarees
Lungren, Fernand Harvey
American Painter, ca.1857-1932
American painter and illustrator. Of Swedish descent, the family moved to Toledo, OH, when Lungren was four years old. He showed an early talent for drawing but was intended by his father for a professional career and in 1874 entered the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, to study mining engineering. He left in 1876, however, determined to become an artist. After a protracted dispute with his father, he was allowed briefly to attend the Pennsylvania Academy in Philadelphia, where he studied under Thomas Eakins and had Robert Frederick Blum, Alfred Laurens Brennan (1853-1921) and Joseph Pennell as fellow students. In the winter of 1877 he moved to New York, where he worked as an illustrator for Scribner's Monthly (renamed Century in 1881) during the period known as 'the Golden Age of American illustration'. His first illustration appeared in 1879 and he continued to contribute to the magazine until 1903. He was also an illustrator for the children's magazine St Nicholas from 1879 to 1904 and later for Harper's Bazaar, McClure's and The Outlook.