Alina 2018-10-22 17:05:39 painters biographies
Georges Braque was a 20th century French painter who invented Cubism with Pablo Picasso. Along with Cubism, Braque used the styles of Impressionism, Fauvism and collage, and even staged designs for the Ballet Russes. Through his career, his style changed to portray somber subjects during wartime and lighter, freer themes in between. He never strayed far from Cubism, as there were always aspects of it in his works. Braque died on August 31, 1963, in Paris.
Georges Braque was a French painter born on May 13, 1882, in Argenteuil, France. He spent his childhood in Le Havre and planned to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather by becoming a house painter. From about 1897 to 1899, Braque studied painting at the École des Beaux-Arts in the evenings. Wanting to pursue artistic painting further, he moved to Paris and apprenticed with a master decorator before painting at the Académie Humbert from 1902 to 1904.
Braque started his art career using an Impressionistic painting style. Circa 1905, he transitioned into a Fauvist style after viewing works exhibited by the Fauves, a group that included such notable artists as Henri Matisse and André Derain. The Fauves' style incorporated bold colors and loose-form structures to emulate deep emotions.
Braque's first solo show took place in 1908 at Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler's gallery. From 1909 to 1914, Braque and fellow artist Pablo Picasso collaborated to develop Cubism as well as to incorporate collage elements and papier collé (pasted paper) into their pieces.
Braque's style changed after World War I, when his art became less structured and planned. A successful exhibition in 1922 at the Salon d'Automne in Paris garnered him much acclaim. A few years later, renowned dancer and choreographer Sergei Diaghilev asked Braque to design decor for two of his ballets at the Ballets Russes. The end of the 1920s saw another style change as Braque began painting more realistic interpretations of nature, though he never strayed far from Cubism, as there were always aspects of it in his works.
Braque started to engrave plaster in 1931, and his first significant show took place two years later at the Kunsthalle Basel. He gained international fame, winning first prize in 1937 at the Carnegie International in Pittsburgh.
The advent of World War II influenced Braque to paint more somber scenes. After the war, he painted lighter subjects of birds, landscapes and the sea. Braque also created lithographs, sculptures and stained-glass windows.
In 1910 Braque met Marcelle Lapré, a model introduced to him by Pablo Picasso. They married in 1912 and lived in the small town of Sorgues in southeastern France. During World War I, Braque served in the French army and sustained wounds in 1915. It took him two years to fully recover.
In his elder years, his failing health prevented him from taking on large-scale commissioned projects. Braque died on August 31, 1963, in Paris.
Alina 2018-10-21 17:05:05 painters biographies
Canatello was born Giovanni Antonio Canal on October 18, 1697, in Venice, Italy. His father painted backdrops for theatrical productions and Canatello helped. Canatello later began painting topographical paintings and lived on commissions from foreign markets. He painted landscapes of Venice, London and the English countryside. In 1762, he was elected to the Venetian Academy. He died in 1768.
Alina 2018-10-20 17:05:00 painters biographies
Caravaggio was born as Michelangelo Merisi in Italy around 1571. He was orphaned at age 11 and apprenticed with a painter in Milan. He moved to Rome, where his work became popular for the tenebrism technique he used, which used shadow to emphasize lighter areas. His career, however, was short-lived. Caravaggio killed a man during a brawl and fled Rome. He died not long after, on July 18, 1610.
Caravaggio, whose fiery masterpieces included "The Death of the Virgin" and "David with the Head of Goliath," and who inspired generations of artists, was born as Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio in 1571 in Italy. The world he arrived in was violent and, at times, unstable. His birth came just a week before the Battle of Lepanto, a bloody conflict in which Turkish invaders were driven out of Christendom.
Not much is known about Caravaggio's early family life. His father, Fermo Merisi, was the steward and architect of the marquis of Caravaggio. When Caravaggio was six, the bubonic plague rolled through his life, killing almost everyone in his family, including his father.
According to writer Andrew Graham-Dixon, author of the 2011 biography "Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane," the artist's troubled adult years stemmed directly from that traumatic loss of his family. "He almost seems bound to transgress," Dixon writes. "It's almost like he cannot avoid transgressing. As soon as he's welcomed by authority, welcomed by the pope, welcomed by the Knights of Malta, he has to do something to screw it up. It's almost like a fatal flaw."
Orphaned, Caravaggio took to the streets and fell in with a group of "painters and swordsmen who lived by the motto nec spe, nec metu, 'without hope, without fear,'" wrote an earlier biographer.
At the age of 11, Caravaggio relocated to Milan and began apprenticing with the painter Simone Peterzano. In his late teens, perhaps as early as 1588, a penniless Caravaggio moved to Rome. There, to keep himself fed, Caravaggio found work assisting other painters, many of them far less talented than he. But as instability defined his existence, Caravaggio jumped from one job to the next.
Sometime around 1595, Caravaggio struck out on his own and started selling his paintings through a dealer. His work soon caught the attention of Cardinal Francesco del Monte, who adored Caravaggio's paintings and quickly set him up in his own house, with room, board and a pension.
A prolific painter, Caravaggio was known to work quickly, often starting and completing a painting in just two weeks. By the time he had come under the influence of del Monte, Caravaggio already had 40 works to his name. The lineup included "Boy with a Basket of Fruit," "The Young Bacchus" and "The Music Party."
Much of Caravaggio's early work featured chubby, pretty young boys done up as angels or lutenists or his favorite saint, John the Baptist. Many of the boys in the paintings are naked or loosely clothed. Caravaggio's only known assistant was a boy named Cecco, who appears in a number of Caravaggio's works and who may have also been his lover.
In 1597, Caravaggio was awarded the commission for the decoration of the Contarelli Chapel in the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi in Rome. It was an important and daunting assignment, charging the 26-year-old painter with the task of creating three large paintings depicting separate scenes from St. Matthew's life.
The three resulting works, "St. Matthew and the Angel," "The Calling of St. Matthew," and "The Martyrdom of St. Matthew," were finished in 1601, and together showed Caravaggio's remarkable range as an artist.
But these works also provoked much consternation from the church and public alike. In his execution of the work, Caravaggio eschewed the traditional worshipful depictions of the saints and presented St. Matthew in a far more realistic light. His first version of "St. Matthew and the Angel" caused so much angst among his patrons that he had to redo it.
For Caravaggio, however, the commission provided an exciting new direction for his painting, one in which he could lift traditional religious scenes and cast them with his own dark interpretation. His biblical scenes became populated with the prostitutes, beggars and thieves whom he had encountered on the streets of Rome.
In addition to some financial relief, the Contarelli Chapel commission also provided Caravaggio a wealth of exposure and work. His paintings from the next few years included "The Crucifixion of St. Peter," "The Conversion of St. Paul," "The Deposition of Christ" and his famous "Death of the Virgin." The latter, with its depiction of the Virgin Mary with a swollen belly and bared legs, packed so much of Caravaggio's style that it was turned away by the Carmelites and eventually landed in the hands of the Duke of Mantua.
Controversy, though, only fueled Caravaggio's success. And as that success grew, so did the painter's own personal turmoil. He could be a violent man, with drastic mood swings and a love for drinking and gambling.
A frequent fighter, Caravaggio eventually served a short prison sentence in 1603 following another painter's complaint that Caravaggio had attacked him. But the next few years only saw Caravaggio's temper becoming hotter. His litany of assaults included throwing a plate of artichokes at a waiter in 1604, and attacking Roman guards with stones in 1605. Wrote one observer: "After a fortnight's work he will swagger about for a month or two with a sword at his side and a servant following him, from one ballcourt to the next, ever ready to engage in a fight or an argument."
His violence finally erupted with force in 1606, when he killed a well-known Roman pimp named Ranuccio Tomassoni. Historians have long speculated about what was at the root of the crime. Some have suggested that it was over an unpaid debt, while others have claimed that it was the result of an argument over a game of tennis. More recently, historians, including Andrew Graham-Dixon, have pointed to Caravaggio's lust for Tomassoni's wife, Lavinia.
Immediately following the murder, Caravaggio fled Rome and sought refuge in a host of other locations: Naples, Malta and Sicily, among others. But even as he fled from punishment for his crime, fame followed Caravaggio. In Malta, he was received into the Order of Malta as a Knight of Justice, an award that he was soon stripped of when the Order learned of the crime he had committed.
However, even as he fled, Caravaggio continued to work. In Naples, he painted "Madonna of the Rosary" for a fellow painter, and later "The Seven Works of Mercy" for the church of Pio Chapel of Monte della Misericordia.
In Malta, he created "Beheading of St. John the Baptist" for the cathedral in Valletta. In Messina, his work included "The Resurrection of Lazarus" and "The Adoration of the Shepherds," while in Palermo he painted the "Adoration with St. Francis and St. Lawrence."
One of Caravaggio's more shocking paintings from this period is "Resurrection," in which the painter revealed a less saintly, more bedraggled Jesus Christ escaping from his tomb in the middle of the night. This scene was no doubt inspired by events in Caravaggio's own life. By this time, Caravaggio had become a nervous wreck, always on the run and in constant fear for his life, so much so that he slept with his clothes on and with a dagger at his side.
The murder that Caravaggio committed in 1606 was not the end of his violence. In July 1608, he attacked Fra Giovanni Rodomonte Roero, one of the most senior knights in the Order of St. John in Malta. Caravaggio was arrested and jailed for the assault but managed to escape just one month later.
According to Andrew Graham-Dixon's research, Roero did not put the attack behind him. In 1609, he followed Caravaggio to Naples and assaulted the painter outside a tavern, disfiguring his face.
The attack had a profound impact on Caravaggio's mental and physical state. His vision and brushwork suffered from the assault, as evidenced by two of his later paintings, "The Martyrdom of Saint Ursula" and "The Denial of Saint Peter."
In order to avoid punishment for murder, Caravaggio's only salvation could come from the pope, who had the power to pardon him. Most likely informed that friends were working on his behalf to secure his pardon, in 1610 Caravaggio began to make his way back to Rome. Sailing from Naples, he was arrested in Palo, where his boat had made a stop. Upon his release, he resumed his journey and eventually arrived at Port'Ercole, where he died just a few days later, on July 18, 1610.
For many years the exact cause of Caravaggio's death had been shrouded in mystery. But in 2010, a team of scientists who studied Caravaggio's remains discovered that his bones contained high levels of lead—levels high enough, they suspect, to have driven the painter mad. Lead poisoning is also suspected of having killed Francisco Goya and Vincent van Gogh.
Even though Caravaggio was shunned after his death, he eventually came to be recognized as one of the founding fathers of modern painting. His work greatly influenced so many future masters, from Diego Velazquez to Rembrandt. In Rome, in 2010, an exhibition of his work that marked the 400th anniversary of his death attracted more than 580,000 visitors.
Alina 2018-10-17 17:05:00 painters biographies
George Catlin was born on July 26, 1796, in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. The self-taught artist began painting portraits in 1823. He decided to record Native American heritage before it was lost and in 1830, he traveled West, visiting tribes, painting portraits and drawing sketches. The Smithsonian acquired most of his work in 1879.
Alina 2018-10-16 17:05:02 painters biographies
Giorgio de Chirico was born to Italian parents in Volos, Greece, on July 10, 1888. In his art, he sought to evoke the hidden meanings behind everyday life, and his enigmatic scenes of empty cities, menacing statues, mysterious shadows and strange combinations of everyday objects inspired the artists of the Surrealist movement in the 1910s. His important "metaphysical" works from these years include "The Enigma of an Autumn Afternoon," "The Soothsayer's Recompense" and "The Mystery and Melancholy of a Street." After a long career, de Chirico died in Rome, Italy, on November 19, 1978.
Giorgio de Chirico was born to Italian parents in the town of Volos, in the Thessaly region of Greece, on July 10, 1888. He first studied art at the Higher School of Fine Arts in Athens. After the death of his father in 1905, de Chirico's mother moved her three children to Munich, where de Chirico completed two years of study at the Academy of Fine Arts. After leaving the Academy he continued to educate himself, taking a particular interest in the philosophical writings of Arthur Schopenhauer and Friedrich Nietzsche. He returned to Italy in 1908, traveling to Milan and Turin and settling in Florence.
As a young artist, de Chirico was inspired by the European Symbolist artists and their use of dream-like imagery. His earliest signature works combined a Symbolist sensibility with his love of the classical antiquities of Greece and Italy and his philosophical musings on the true nature of reality. In paintings such as "Enigma of an Autumn Afternoon" (1910), de Chirico depicted dramatically lit city piazzas inhabited only by one or two figures, a statue or mysterious shadows.
In 1911, de Chirico traveled to Paris, France, where his brother, Andrea (also known as Alberto Savinio), was living. There, he exhibited his work and met a number of influential avant-garde artists and writers, including Pablo Picasso and Constantin Brancusi.
De Chirico produced many of his most important and influential paintings during his Parisian stay of 1911-15. In works like "The Soothsayer's Recompense" (1913) and "The Mystery and Melancholy of a Street" (1914), he continued to paint scenes of classical architecture and town squares punctuated by only a lone figure or monument. The mood of these paintings, with their exaggerated perspectives and empty spaces, was increasingly unsettling.
Meanwhile, World War I had begun, and de Chirico and his brother were drafted into the Italian Army in 1915. De Chirico was stationed in Ferrara, but soon afterward, he had a nervous breakdown and spent time in a military hospital. In 1917, he met artist Carlo Carrà, who worked with him to define his style of "metaphysical painting," emphasizing the hidden significance of ordinary places and objects.
De Chirico's "metaphysical" works, including "Love Song" (1914), "The Seer" (1915) and "The Disquieting Muses" (1917), featured illogical combinations of everyday objects such as rubber gloves, fruit and maps, and were peopled by faceless mannequins. By this time, de Chirico's work was greatly admired by the newly formed Surrealist school of artists and writers, who were fascinated by dream analysis and the subconscious mind.
Though de Chirico did not identify himself as a Surrealist, he briefly collaborated with the artists of this circle, showing his work in their group exhibitions in Paris and illustrating books by Guillaume Apollinaire and Jean Cocteau. However, in the 1920s, he began working in a neo-traditional style inspired by Renaissance "old masters" like Raphael and Titian, and he turned against modern art and broke ties with the Surrealists.
De Chirico's later career was inconsistent and occasionally controversial. He worked in a variety of formats from theater design to book illustration to sculpture, but his style was subject to unpredictable changes. His reputation was damaged when falsely dated copies of his works, by both de Chirico himself and forgers, infiltrated the art market.
De Chirico died on November 19, 1978, in Rome, Italy. He had been married twice, first to Raissa Gurievich and then to Isabella Pakszwer Far. After his death, de Chirico was recognized and praised for his influence on both the Surrealists and a later generation of artists, photographers and filmmakers.
Alina 2018-10-10 17:05:00 painters biographies
John Singleton Copley was born July 3, 1738 in Boston, Massachusetts. In 1766 he exhibited Boy with a Squirrel at the Society of Artists in London. When political and economic conditions in Boston began to deteriorate (Copley's father-in-law was the merchant to whom the tea that provoked the Boston Tea Party was consigned), Copley left the country in June 1774 and established a home in England.
Alina 2018-10-09 17:05:00 painters biographies
Born in Paris, France, in 1796, Camille Corot's prosperous family gave him the money he needed to pursue his passion for painting. Though it took some time before Corot was a success, by the 1850s his work was extremely popular. He is known for his landscape paintings and an artistic style that inspired many Impressionists. Corot painted more than 3,000 pictures during his career. He died in Paris in 1875.
Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot was born into a well-to-do family on July 16 (some sources say July 17), 1796, in Paris, France. His Swiss-born mother ran a fashionable milliner's shop and his father worked as a draper, or textile merchant. Corot tried to apprentice as a draper, but failed in the endeavor. By the time he was 26, his parents had given him an allowance that would permit him to pursue his passion for painting.
Corot first had lessons with Achille-Etna Michallon, then became a student of Jean-Victor Bertin. Both Michallon and Bertin had studied with landscape painter Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes, and Corot began to paint landscapes as well.
From 1825 to 1828, Corot lived in Italy and honed his artistic skills. These influential years saw him painting the city of Rome and its countryside, as well as Naples and Ischia. It was a happy time for Corot, during which he declared to a friend, "All I really want to do in life ... is to paint landscapes. This firm resolve will stop me forming any serious attachments. That is to say, I shall not get married."
In 1827, Camille Corot's "The Bridge at Narni" was displayed at the Paris Salon (a prestigious art exhibition). Corot continued to send paintings to the Salon and was awarded a Salon medal at the age of 37. He became a regular exhibitor in the 1830s, with paintings such as "Hagar in the Wilderness" (Salon of 1835).
Corot returned to Italy in 1834, where he sketched and painted places such as Florence, Pisa, Genoa and Venice. He would continue to travel throughout his life, visiting Avignon and the south of France as well as Switzerland and other European locations.
On trips abroad and while in France, Corot worked outdoors during the warmer months, trying to capture views and landscapes. These sketches were not meant to be displayed or sold—the larger pictures Corot intended to exhibit were produced inside his studio.
Though he received some critical praise, only a few of Corot's paintings sold in the 1830s. In 1840, the state purchased one of his works, "The Little Shepherd." Corot's artistic achievements were further acknowledged in 1846 when he was made a member of the Legion of Honor (an order of merit that was established by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802).
In the 1850s, Corot began to paint in a softer style, using a restricted palette of colors. Collectors and dealers were scrambling to buy his work as the 1850s progressed. Six of his pieces were seen at the Exposition Universelle of 1855, where Corot won a gold medal and sold a painting to Emperor Napoleon III.
Corot also created paintings that focused more on emotion and atmosphere. He described them as "souvenirs," as they were based on memories of places he had visited.
Corot was in close contact with and influenced by painters of the realistic Barbizon school, such as Jean-François Millet, Théodore Rousseau and Charles-François Daubigny. Corot's landscapes and plein air sketches also served to inspire Impressionist painters. Corot even taught some Impressionists, such as Camille Pissaro.
Devoted to painting, Corot continued to work throughout his life, producing more than 3,000 pictures during his career. In the 1860s, he also experimented with photography and printmaking, and used a technique called cliché-verre to combine the two. Corot died in Paris on February 22, 1875, at the age of 78.
Alina 2018-10-08 17:05:00 painters biographies
Born in 1748 in Paris, France, Jacques-Louis David became a painter of great renown as his style of history painting helped end the frivolity of the Rococo period, moving art back to the realm of classical austerity. One of David's most famous works, "The Death of Marat" (1793), portrays the famous French Revolutionary figure dead in his bath after an assassination. He died in Brussels, Belgium, in 1825.
Jacques-Louis David was born on August 30, 1748, in Paris, France. His father was killed in a duel in when David was 9 years old, and the boy was subsequently left by his mother to be raised by two uncles.
When David showed an interest in painting, his uncles sent him to François Boucher, a leading painter of the time and family friend. Boucher was a Rococo painter, but the Rococo era was giving way to a more classical style, so Boucher decided to send David to his friend Joseph-Marie Vien, a painter more in tune with the neoclassical reaction to Rococo.
By age 18, the gifted young artist was enrolled at the Académie Royale (Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture). After several failures in competitions and finding more discouragement than support, during a period that included a suicide attempt (apparently by avoiding food), in 1774, he finally obtained the Prix de Rome, a government scholarship that ensured well-paid commissions in France. Also included in the scholarship was a trip to Italy, and in 1775, he and Vien went to Rome together, where David studied Italian masterpieces and the ruins of ancient Rome.
Before he left Paris, he proclaimed, "The art of antiquity will not seduce me, for it lacks liveliness," and the works of the great masters almost held him to his word, such was the pull of their genius. Instead, though, he became interested in the Neoclassical ideas originated in Rome by, among others, German painter Anton Raphael Mengs and art historian Johann Joachim Winckelmann.
Back in Paris in 1780, and to much acclaim, David exhibited "Belisarius Asking Alms," in which he combined his own approach to antiquity with a Neoclassical style reminiscent of Nicolas Poussin. In 1782, David married Marguerite Pécoul, whose father was an influential building contractor and the superintendent of construction at the Louvre. David began to prosper at this point, and he was elected to the Académie Royale in 1784 on the heels of his "Andromache Mourning Hector."
That same year, David returned to Rome to complete "Oath of the Horatii," whose austere visual treatment—somber color, frieze-like composition and clear lighting—was a sharp departure from the prevailing Rococo style of the time. Exhibited in the official Paris Salon of 1785, the painting created a sensation and was regarded as a declaration of an artistic movement (revival, in fact) that would put an end to the delicate frivolity of the Rococo period. It also came, before too long, to symbolize the end of aristocratic corruption and a return in France to the patriotic morals of republican Rome.
In 1787, David displayed "Death of Socrates." Two year later, in 1789, he unveiled "The Lictors Bringing to Brutus the Bodies of His Sons." At this point, the French Revolution had begun, and, thusly, this portrayal of Brutus—the patriotic Roman consul who ordered the deaths of his traitorous sons to save the republic—took on political significance, as did David himself.
In the early years of the Revolution, Jacque-Louis David was a member of the extremist Jacobin group led by Maximilien de Robespierre, and he became an active, politically committed artist involved in a good deal of revolutionary propaganda. He produced such works as "Joseph Bara", the sketched "Oath of the Tennis Court" and "Death of Lepeletier de Saint-Fargeau" during this period, all with revolutionary themes marked by martyrdom and heroics in the face of the establishment.
David's revolutionary inspiration is ultimately best represented by "The Death of Marat," painted in 1793, soon after the murder of revolutionary leader Jean-Paul Marat. This so-called "piet of the Revolution" is considered David's masterpiece. As one modern critic put it, the piece is "a moving testimony to what can be achieved when an artist's political convictions are directly manifested in his work." Marat became an instant political martyr while the painting became a symbol of sacrifice in the name of the republic.
Elected to the National Convention in 1792, David voted for the execution of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. By 1793, David, having gained much power through his association with Robespierre, was effectively the art dictator of France. Once in this role, he promptly abolished the Académie Royale (whether out of spite for his struggles there years before, or by a desire for a complete overhaul of every system in place, remains unclear).
By 1794, Robespierre and his revolutionary allies had gone too far in silencing counter-revolutionary voices, and the people of France began to question his authority. In July of that year, it came to a head, and Robespierre was sent to the guillotine. David was arrested, remaining in prison until the amnesty of 1795.
Upon release, David devoted his time to teaching. With the same energy he had spent on revolutionary politics, he trained hundreds of young European painters, among them such future masters as Franois Gérard and Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. (Some 60 years later, Eugene Delacroix would refer to David as the "father of the whole modern school.") He also became the official painter of Napoleon I.
David had admired Napoleon since their first meeting, and sketched him for the first time in 1797. After Napoleon's coup in 1799, he commissioned David to commemorate his crossing of the Alps: David painted "Napoleon Crossing the Saint-Bernard" (also known as "Napoleon Crossing the Alps"). Napoleon named David court painter in 1804.
After Napoleon fell in 1815, David was exiled to Brussels, Belgium, where he lost much of his old creative energy. Ten years into his exile, he was struck by a carriage, sustaining injuries from which he would never recover.
Jacques-Louis David died on December 29, 1825, in Brussels, Belgium. Because he had participated in the execution of King Louis XVI, David was not allowed to be buried in France, so he was buried at Evere Cemetery in Brussels. His heart, meanwhile, was buried at the Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris.