Blog - Painters biographies

Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre Biography

Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre Biography

Alina    2018-12-16 12:32:12    painters biographies   

Painter, Physicist, Inventor, Scientist (1787–1851)

Louis Daguerre was a French artist and physicist who gained international acclaim when he invented the process of photography.


In January 1839, Louis Daguerre’s “daguerreotype” (photographic) process was announced at a meeting of the Academy of Sciences by eminent astronomer and physicist François Arago. Daguerre was made an officer of the Legion of Honour, and in 1839 Daguerre and the heir of Niépce (his collaborator) were given annuities of 6,000 francs and 4,000 francs, respectively, for their photographic process.

read more

John Butler Yeats Biography

John Butler Yeats Biography

Alina    2018-12-16 12:26:49    painters biographies   

Painter (1839–1922)

Painter John Butler Yeats was the father of poet William Butler Yeats and artist Jack Butler Yeats. His portrait of John O'Leary is considered his best work.


John Butler Yeats was born March 16, 1839, in Tullylish, Ireland. The father of poet William Butler Yeats and painter/illustrator Jack Butler Yeats, the artist's portrait of the former is one of his most famous; it is housed among others in the Yeats museum in the National Gallery of Ireland. His 1904 portrait of John O'Leary is considered to be his masterpiece. Yeats died in New York City on February 3, 1922.

Early Life

Born on March 16, 1839, in Tullylish, County Down, Ireland, John Butler Yeats attended Trinity College Dublin and studied law at King's Inn in Dublin. He was admitted to the bar in 1866, and had a short-lived career as a barrister before pursuing his love of drawing in 1867.

Commercial Success

Yeats went on to attend Heatherleys Art School in London, and his portraits were frequently commissioned. A poor businessman, however, he and his family were never financially secure. The father of poet William Butler Yeats and painter/illustrator Jack Butler Yeats, the artist's portrait of the former is one of his most famous; it is housed among others in the Yeats museum in the National Gallery of Ireland. His 1904 portrait of John O'Leary is considered to be his masterpiece.

Later Years

Yeats moved several times between England and Ireland throughout his life. At age 69, in 1907, he moved to New York City, where he lived for 14 years. While there, he roomed in a boarding house and communed with artists, intellectuals and writers, among them painters of the Ashcan School. Though he never returned to Ireland, Yeats stayed in contact with his family and friends through extensive correspondence.

John Butler Yeats died in New York City on February 3, 1922. He is buried in Chestertown.

read more

Fernando Botero Biography

Fernando Botero Biography

Alina    2018-12-16 12:20:08    painters biographies   

Sculptor, Painter (1932–)

Fernando Botero is a Colombian artist known for creating bloated, oversized depictions of people, animals and elements of the natural world.


Born in Colombia in 1932, Fernando Botero left matador school to become an artist, displaying his work for the first time in a 1948. His subsequent art, now exhibited in major cities worldwide, concentrates on situational portraiture united by his subjects' proportional exaggeration.

Early Years

Born in Medellin, Colombia, on April 19, 1932, Fernando Botero attended a matador school for several years in his youth, and then left the bull ring behind to pursue an artistic career. Botero's paintings were first exhibited in 1948, when he was 16 years old, and he had his first one-man show two years later in Bogota.

Botero's work in these early years was inspired by pre-Colombian and Spanish colonial art and the political murals of Mexican artist Diego Rivera. Also influential were the works of his artistic idols at the time, Francisco de Goya and Diego Velázquez. By the early 1950s, Botero had begun studying painting in Madrid, where he made his living copying paintings hanging in the Prado and selling the copies to tourists.

The Maturing Artist

Throughout the 1950s, Botero experimented with proportion and size, and he began developing his trademark style—round, bloated humans and animals—after he moved to New York City in 1960. The inflated proportions of his figures, including those in Presidential Family (1967), suggest an element of political satire, and are depicted using flat, bright color and prominently outlined forms—a nod to Latin-American folk art. And while his work includes still-lifes and landscapes, Botero has typically concentrated on his emblematic situational portraiture.

After reaching an international audience with his art, in 1973, Botero moved to Paris, where he began creating sculptures. These works extended the foundational themes of his painting, as he again focused on his bloated subjects. As his sculpture developed, by the 1990s, outdoor exhibitions of huge bronze figures were staged around the world to great success.

Recent Works

In 2004, Botero turned to the overtly political, exhibiting a series of drawings and paintings focusing on the violence in Colombia stemming from drug cartel activities. In 2005, he unveiled his "Abu Ghraib" series, based on reports of American military forces abusing prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison during the Iraq War. The series took him more than 14 months to complete, and received considerable attention when it was first exhibited in Europe.

Personal Life

Fernando Botero has been married three times, having wed current wife, Greek artist Sophia Vari, in the mid-1970s. He has several children as well, with one son having died as a child during a car accident. Botero continues to exhibit his works around the world.

read more

Leon Golub Biography

Leon Golub Biography

Alina    2018-12-16 12:08:52    painters biographies   

Anti-War Activist, Painter (1922–2004)

Leon Golub was an American painter who was both horrified and inspired by the Vietnam War.


Born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1922, Leon Golub was active in the Vietnam-era peace movement, and his reaction against human brutality led him to an expressionistic and dramatic use of the human figure in monumental and rough-hewn paintings that often took inspiration from Greek tragedy and mythology. Many of his paintings in the 1960s and '70s were commentaries on the Vietnam War, and his works had a sense of gritty immediacy.

Early Life and Career

Born on January 23, 1922, in Chicago, Illinois, Leon Albert Golub was a leading American artist in the late 20th century. He is known for his graphic images depicting man's inhumanity to man. Golub first studied art history at the University of Chicago. Not long after earning his degree in 1942, he joined the U.S. Army. Golub spent much of the war stationed in Europe as a cartographer.

After the war, Golub returned to Chicago. There he earned a master's of fine arts degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Around this time, Golub met and married fellow artist Nancy Spero. He received some notice for his early work, winning the Florsheim Memorial Prize in 1954. After spending several years teaching at various schools, Golub moved to Paris, France, with his wife and three sons in the late 1959.

Golub had a career breakthrough that same year when he was selected to exhibit five paintings at the Museum of Modern Art's "New Images of Man" show in New York City. His work was included alongside that of such established and rising artists as Willem de Kooning, Francis Bacon and Jackson Pollock.

Controversial Artist

In 1964, Leon Golub returned to the United States with his family, and soon began work on a series of paintings known as "Gigantomachies." Interested in issues relating to power, Golub displays figures engaged in some form of struggle in these large-scale works; he used a technique of scraping paint on the canvas to create a rough, almost three-dimensional effect.

As the Vietnam War progressed, Golub chose to explore his political views more explicitly in his works. He and his wife were both anti-war activists, and his critiques of the conflict emerged in such paintings as "Napalm I" and "Napalm II"—both completed in 1969. Golub also showed graphic clashes between U.S. forces and Vietnamese civilians in works such as "Vietnam III" (1973). Many viewers were startled by his frank depiction of the ongoing war.

Beginning in 1979, Golub began work on another series of unsettling images with his "Mercenaries" paintings, which depict armed soldiers; Golub often painted these military figures looking to the viewer, somehow making them a party to their actions. Around this time, he also created portraits of global power players, including Nelson Rockefeller, Fidel Castro and Mao Tse-tung. In the 1980s, Golub displayed scenes of graphic violence in his "Interrogation" series.

Later Years

Golub changed his style in his later works, choosing symbols and words for his canvases over more direct representations of his ideas. Dogs and skulls appeared in a number of these paintings, including "Infvitabile Fatvm" (1994). "Dogs move through our culture as a kind of unresolved issue," he explained to The New York Times. "I mean, we mistreat dogs, we pet dogs; when a city gets bombed out, what's left are dogs roaming through the city."

Golub's work was the subject of a major retrospective at the Dublin Museum of Modern Art in 2000, and this exhibit appeared at the Brooklyn Museum of Art the following year.

Golub continued working until his death, on August 8, 2004, at the age of 82, in New York City. Today, he is remembered for challenging the viewer with his exploration of power. As ARTnews writer Amei Wallach once wrote: "Golub was a righteous monster who reconciled painting with the unpalatable realities of his time."

read more

Fra Angelico Biography

Fra Angelico Biography

Alina    2018-11-04 16:05:21    painters biographies   

Monk, Painter (c. 1400–1455)

Dominican friar and painter Fra Angelico lived in Florence during the early 1400s. He is considered one of the best fresco painters of the century.


Fra Angelico was born in 1400 in Florence, Italy. Between 1420 and 1422 he entered a monastery the San Domenico at Fiesole. He painted altarpieces and manuscripts. Linaiuoli Altarpiece, a triptych enclosed in a marble shrine, was an early masterpiece, but he went on to paint famous frescoes at the monastery of San Marco in Florence and a chapel in the Vatican. He died in 1455.

read more

John James Audubon Biography

John James Audubon Biography

Alina    2018-11-03 16:05:47    painters biographies   

Illustrator, Painter, Scientist (1785–1851)

John James Audubon was an American ornithologist, artist and naturalist known for his studies, drawings and paintings of North American birds.


John James Audubon was born on April 26, 1785, in Les Cayes, Saint Domingue, Hispaniola (a former French colony; now Haiti). Audubon conducted his first scientific studies from his father's Pennsylvania estate. After trying and failing in several different types of business ventures, he concentrated on drawing and studying birds, and began traveling around the country to pursue this work. He got his extraordinary four-volume Birds of America published in London in 1827 and followed it up with several related works. He died in New York City in 1851.


John James Audubon was born in Les Cayes, in what is now Haiti, on April 26, 1785. The illegitimate son of French plantation owner Captain Jean Audubon and his Creole servant Jeanne Rabin, he was given the name Jean Rabin at birth. However, when his mother died shortly after his birth, he and his sister were sent to Nantes, France, where they were raised by the captain’s wife, Anne. The couple legally adopted the children in 1794 and gave Jean a new name: Jean-Jacques Fougère Audubon.

Audubon’s new name came new privileges. He was given the education worthy of a wealthy merchant’s son, which included lessons in art, music and natural history. The boy was also afforded an abundance of leisure time to explore the world around him. It was during his youthful wanderings that Audubon began to develop an interest in the natural world. He grew particularly fascinated with birds, and was soon using his artistic abilities to sketch them on a regular basis.

New Worlds

In 1803, when Audubon was 18, war broke out between France and England. To keep him from being conscripted into the Emperor Napoleon’s army, his father sent him to his estate in Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. He also put Audubon in charge of the lead mining operations there. Changing his name to John James Audubon en route, he wholeheartedly embraced the new world that he found waiting for him. Focusing his attention on birds, he continued his careful observations of their behavior, determined to depict them more accurately than his contemporaries did.

The year after his arrival in the United States, Audubon met and fell in love with a young woman named Lucy Bakewell. They married in 1808. When the mining operations in Mill Grove failed, they moved to Louisville, Kentucky, where Audubon set up a general store and Lucy gave birth to their first son. When business slowed there, Audubon moved his family and store further west to the town of Henderson, Kentucky.

Taking Flight

While attempting to keep his business afloat and family fed, Audubon also took time to travel and hunt, becoming progressively more intimate with the natural environment and dedicated to documenting it. During this time, the couple had three more children, a son and two daughters; sadly, both of the girls died while they were both very young. Those personal tragedies were compounded by the ultimate failure of his business, which briefly landed Audubon in jail for unpaid debts.

Unsure of where to turn next, in 1820 Audubon headed south to study and draw birds. He eventually settled with his family in New Orleans. They survived on Lucy’s income as a governess, supplemented by the money Audubon could pull together by painting portraits on the street and teaching drawing. During this time, Audubon continued to build on his talents as an artist and credentials a naturalist, amassing a huge collection of drawings that distinguished themselves for their dramatic and life-like qualities.

Birds of America

By 1824, Audubon had grown intent on finding a publisher for his work, but was unable to generate any serious interest in the United States. Two years later, he set sail for the United Kingdom, where he hoped to at least be able to find engravers skilled enough to properly reproduce his work. The decision immediately proved a good one. He exhibited his work in both Scotland and England to great acclaim, fascinating the public with his impressive drawing skills as well as some tall tales he relayed about life on the American frontier.

The success of his exhibitions would finally lead to the first publication of the book for which he is now best known: Birds of America. Featuring more than 400 plates of his drawings, the four-volume work was printed in London by Havell & Son in 1827 and serialized until 1838. Accompanying it was Ornithological Biography, which featured text about the lives and behaviors of his subjects as well as highlights about Audubon’s adventures. He followed these seminal works with 1839’s A Synopsis of the Birds of North America.

Throughout this period, Audubon traveled back and forth between the United States and Europe, overseeing the publication of his works and also selling them in popular serialized subscriptions to admirers who included King George IV and United States President Andrew Jackson. His fame and fortune firmly established, in 1841 Audubon moved his family to a large rural estate on the Hudson in upper Manhattan, where he began work on a more compact edition of Birds of America.

Last Frontier

However, neither advancing age nor public adulation would reduce the lure of the natural world for Audubon. So, in 1843 he ventured west to the Missouri River where he undertook research for a new work on mammals titled The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America. However, by the time he began to assemble his drawings for the project, Audubon’s eyesight began to fail him and he became steadily more reliant on his sons and his collaborator, Reverend John Bachman, to help him complete it. In 1848, he suffered an incapacitating stroke that also began to affect his mind.

John James Audubon died at home on January 27, 1851, and was buried at Trinity Cemetery in New York City. He is remembered as one of the most important naturalists of his era, and his respect and concern for the natural world clearly marks him as one of the forefathers of the modern conservationism and environmentalism movements. In 1886, the first bird-preservation society, the National Audubon Society, was named in his honor. Countless wildlife sanctuaries, parks, streets and towns also bear his name and honor his legacy.

read more

Hieronymus Bosch Biography

Hieronymus Bosch Biography

Alina    2018-10-29 16:05:01    painters biographies   

Painter (c. 1450–1516)

Hieronymus Bosch was a European painter of the late Middle Ages. His two most famous works are "The Garden of Earthly Delights" and "The Temptation of St. Anthony."


Born in 's-Hertogenbosch, Brabant (now in the Netherlands), around 1450, Hieronymus Bosch was a northern European painter of the late Middle Ages. His work utilizes striking and sometimes seemingly surreal iconography. Bosch painted several large-scale triptyches, including "The Garden of Earthly Delights" (c. 1510-15). Throughout his career, he used his art to portray the sins and follies of humankind and to show the consequences of these actions. He died in 's-Hertogenbosch in 1516.

Mysterious Artist

Born around 1450 in 's-Hertogenbosch, in the duchy of Brabant (now the Netherlands), Hieronymus Bosch remains one of the art world's great enigmas. Little is known about his life, and the only clues have the few traces of him found in local records. Even his name is a bit misleading. He was born Jeroen van Aeken and took his professional name, in part, from his hometown.

Bosch came from an artistic family—his father, uncles and his brother were all painters by trade. It is believed that he was trained by a relative growing up. Around 1480 or 1481, he married Alety Goyaerts den Meervenne. His wife came from a wealthy family, and he enjoyed a comfortable life and improved social status through this union. A Catholic, Bosch joined the Brotherhood of Our Lady, a local religious organization devoted to the Virgin Mary, around 1486. Some of his first commissions came through the Brotherhood, but, unfortunately, none of those works survived.

Major Works

Known for his dark and disturbing visions, Bosch took a critical look at the world around in several of his works. With "The Cure of Folly" (c. 1475-1480), he poked fun of the misguided medical practices of the day. Bosch rebuked those who spent their lives seeking earthly pleasures in "The Ship of Fools" (c. 1490-1500).

Throughout his career, Bosch focused much of his attention to exploring religious themes. "The Haywain" (c. 1500-02), a triptych, first shows Adam and Eve in its interior left panel. The center panel features both clergy and peasants engaged in sinful behavior. The right panel provides a gruesome illustration of where that type of behavior leads—hell.

In 1504, Bosch painted "The Last Judgment," which illustrated the fall of humanity. He starts the triptych with the banishment of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. The remaining two interior panels show the world's descent into sin, violence and chaos. Bosch made another triptych, "The Temptation of Saint Anthony" (c. 1505-06), a short time later. He shows the saint resisting the efforts of the devil to make him surrender to evil. There is an attempt to seduce Saint Anthony and then means of force are tried on him, but he shown in the final panel being led away by a group of believers.

"The Garden of Earthly Delights" (c. 1510-15) is one of Bosch's later works. Again depicting the decline of the world through sin, primarily lust, a beautiful garden becomes a dark, fiery nightmare in the last panel of this triptych. This work, like so many of his pieces, serves as a visual lecture on morality.

Death and Legacy

Bosch died in 's-Hertogenbosch in August 1516 (the exact date of his death is unknown, but a funeral mass was held for him on August 9). While he enjoyed some success during his lifetime, he attracted an even grander fan soon after his death. King Philip II of Spain became a serious collector of Bosch's work, and "The Garden of Earthly Delight" is said to have been hung in his bedroom to remind the Spanish monarch to stay on a righteous path. Today, the Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid holds many of Bosch's works.

read more

Sandro Botticelli Biography

Sandro Botticelli Biography

Alina    2018-10-23 17:05:29    painters biographies   

Painter (1445–1510)

Sandro Botticelli was an Italian painter of the early Renaissance-era. He contributed to the frescoes in the Sistine Chapel and painted the immortal The Birth of Venus.


Sandro Botticelli was born in the mid-1440s in Florence, Italy. As a boy, he apprenticed as a goldsmith and then with master painter Filippo Lippi. By his forties, Botticelli was himself a master and contributed to the decoration the Sistine Chapel. His best known work is The Birth of Venus. He died in 1510.

read more


Alina Sluchinskaya, 41100 Shostka, Sumy region, Ukraine
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • VK
  • OK
  • Google+
  • Skype
  • Viber