We know Vincent Van Gogh as one the most famous Dutch painters for the 19th century but surprisingly, during his short life he sold very few of his works. He started as an art dealer, but after battling with depression, he turned to religion and became a missionary in Belgium. Van Gogh only took to painting professionally in 1881 when he returned to the Netherlands. He continued to struggle with depression and was considered unstable and a failure as an artist. It was only after his death at the age of 37 that he became a commercial success. Van Gogh is now considered a misunderstood genius and a stereotype of the tortured artist. He completed the majority of his works during the last 2 years of his life, they are vivid and dramatic, and his expressive brushwork brings life and movement to his artwork. Van Gogh’s work is still popular to this day and are still some of the most expensive artworks ever to be sold.
John James Audubon (1785 – 1851) was and ornithologist and painter well known for his book Birds of America. The images he created are meticulously detailed are considered to be an archetype of wildlife illustration.
James John Audubon
Franz Marc was a key figure of the German Expressionist movement. His distinctive style was heavily influenced the cubism and the futuristic and his work had a huge impact on post First World War expressionism. Together with Kandinsky he found Der Blau Reiter, with the goal to overcome the toxic state of the world through art. He was drafted into the German army at the beginning of the First World War and died from shrapnel wounds at the Battle of Verdun in 1916.
Oscar-Claude Monet is one of the most famous French painters in the world. He is one of the founding fathers of the French impressionist movement and his artwork is famous the world over. Monet’s artwork shows how his direct observation of nature and the way that light shifts and changes with the seasons.
Winslow Homer was a renowned 19th Century American artist, he worked as an artist correspondent for the illustrated journal Harper’s Weekly. Famous for his seascapes and depictions of daily life by the coast, he used both oils and watercolours to capture the moment in stunning detail.