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Abeking, Hermann  

German, 20th century, male.

Born 26 August 1882, in Berlin; died 4 July 1939, in Berlin.

Draughtsman, illustrator, poster artist, caricaturist.

Symbolism, Jugendstil.

Hermann Abeking was still very much influenced by the Jugendstil, and particularly by Aubrey Beardsley and Jan Toorop. He worked on several German magazines, including the ...


Adam, Paul  

Rodolphe Rapetti

(b Paris, Dec 7, 1862; d Paris, Jan 1, 1920).

French writer and critic. His fictional work developed rapidly from a naturalist concept of the novel (e.g. Chair molle, Paris, 1885) to a symbolist one (e.g. Etre, Paris, 1888). As an art critic, he played an important role in the first years of Neo-Impressionism. The few pieces that he wrote between 1886 and 1889 placed him in the top rank of contemporary critics and were of considerable influence. He was less interested in analysing the theoretical bases of Neo-Impressionism than in deciphering their implications, stressing the relationship of this new method of painting to Symbolism. He felt that the use by Seurat and his followers of a body of scientific theories on which to base their art was not only an indication of their adherence to the modernity that pervaded the century but also revealed an underlying tendency towards abstraction. At the same time fundamental visual concepts or ‘preconceived sensorial notions’ that had served as the basis of western art were called into question. In this regard, the ‘pictorial concern to interpret the pure phenomenon’ corresponded to the aspiration towards synthesis that marked Symbolism and was ‘in close correlation to contemporary philosophy, biology and physics in denying the existence of objects, declaring matter to be the mere appearance of vibratory movement that is the source of our impressions, our sensations, our ideas’ (...


Aguéli, Ivan or Gustave  

Swedish, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born 24 May 1869, in Sala (Västmanland); died 1 October 1917, in Barcelona.

Painter. Figures, nudes, portraits, landscapes.


Pont-Aven School.

In 1890 Ivan Aguéli met Émile Bernard, becoming his pupil before joining the Pont-Aven School. He had only two periods of painting, the first ...


Alcovero y Lopez, José  

Spanish, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born in Madrid.



In addition to his studies at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid, José Alcovero y Lopez also benefited from the advice of his father, José Alcovero y Amoros. In 1899...


Alexander, John White  

American, 19th – 20th century, male.

Active in Europe 1877-1881, and in Paris 1891-1901.

Born 7 October 1856, in Allegheny, Pennsylvania; died 31 May 1915, in New York.

Painter, muralist, illustrator. Portraits, figures, landscapes.

Symbolism, Art Nouveau.

John White Alexander worked as an office boy for ...


Alvarez, Xavier  

French, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1949, in Paris.

Sculptor (bronze). Figures. Statuettes.


Alvarez is a self-taught artist. He began by sculpting steel. He lives and works in Paris and set up an experimental foundry in Touraine. His figures of men and women are pure and round. He exhibited collectively in ...


Alwani, Khouzayma  

Syrian, 20th century, male.

Born 1934, in Hama.

Painter. Figures, scenes with figures. Stage sets.


Group of Ten.

Khouzayma Alwani trained at the academy of fine art in Rome in 1957 and received his diploma as a theatre artist in 1964. In 1973, he was awarded another diploma, this time from the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He has been Professor at the school of fine arts in Damascus since ...


Andreev, Nicolai Andreevich  

Russian, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born 1873; died 1932.

Sculptor, draughtsman. Busts, monuments.


Nicolai Andreevich Andreev received the authorisation to draw in Lenin's office in 1919; from these drawings, which later were also used by other artists, he executed a series of busts that made him famous. Andreev also sculpted the monuments in Moscow to Gogol and Herzen, the 19th-century revolutionary writer....


Andreoli, Attilio  

20th century.

Born 7 April 1887, in Chiari, near Brescia; died 9 November 1950, at Cavaglio Spoccia, near Novara (Piedmont).

Painter, pastellist, watercolourist, draughtsman. Religious subjects, figures, portraits.


Attilio Andreoli studied at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera and was a pupil of Clemente Tafuri at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Naples. He painted figures and portraits, often of women, where features seem to dissolve in the vibrations of ochre and dark tones....


Anguera, Jean  

French, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1953, in Paris.

Sculptor, draughtsman.


Jean Anguera is the grandson of the sculptor Pablo Gargallo. He graduated in architecture in 1978 (UP2) in Paris. He also attended lectures by César Baldaccini at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris (...


Anisfel’d, Boris  

Jeremy Howard


(b Beltsy, Bessarabia [now in Moldova], Oct 14, 1879; d Waterford, CT, Dec 4, 1973).

Russian painter and stage designer. He was a Symbolist artist who, like many of his colleagues in the World of Art group, made his foremost contribution to the development of Russian art in the fields of graphic art and stage design. He first studied at the Drawing School of the Odessa Society of Fine Arts (1895–1900) and then at the St Petersburg Academy of Arts (1901–9), where his tutors included Dmitry Kardovsky and Il’ya Repin. His participation in exhibitions included the World of Art (St Petersburg and Moscow, 1906–18), the Union of Russian Artists (Moscow and St Petersburg, 1906–10), the Salon d’Automne (Paris, 1906), Wreath (St Petersburg, 1908) and the Izdebsky International Salon (Kiev and Odessa, 1909–10). His painting attracted considerable critical acclaim for its exotic themes and colouring. Simultaneously, he worked as a caricaturist, creating grotesque and fantastic images for satirical magazines as well as executing wall paintings for houses in St Petersburg. His prolific career as a stage designer began in ...


Anisfeld, Boris Israilovich  

Russian, 20th century, male.

Born 1879, in Beltsy; died 1973, in Stonington (Connecticut).

Painter (gouache), draughtsman. Scenes with figures. Stage costumes and sets.


Boris Anisfeld studied at the academy of fine art in St Petersburg. He spent some time in the south of France working on the Spanish border around 1913 and exhibited at the Salon d’Automne, of which he became a member. He then returned to work in Petrograd, only to leave again in 1917. From 1918 to 1920, he took part in a touring exhibition in the United States: Brooklyn Museum in New York, Allbright Knox Museum in Buffalo, Chicago Art Institute, Museum of Art in St Louis and in San Francisco....


Anna, Margit  

Hungarian, 20th century, female.

Born 1913; died 1991.

Painter. Figure compositions.


European School group.

The wife of Imre Amos, an important representative of the Surrealist trend in Hungary, Margit Anna had virtually the same career in her own painting. In her youth her paintings were in the Post-Impressionist tradition. Chagall's work influenced her with his poetry, linking the memory of childhood and the creation of fantasy. The search for childhood innocence prevails over the inspiration of fantasy, perhaps because the Surrealist model had faded for her with the death of her husband in ...


Anquetin, Louis  

French, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born 26 January 1861, in Etrépagny (Eure); died 1932, in Paris.

Painter (gouache), watercolourist, draughtsman. Figure compositions, nudes, portraits, still-lifes.


Louis Anquetin went to school in Rouen. He was given an allowance by his father, a well-off shopkeeper, to go and study painting in Paris. In 1882 he entered the free academy run by Cormon, where he was heavily influenced by the Impressionists, particularly Monet, whom he revered, but also Degas (especially his Japonist periods). Anquetin was extremely talented and made an impression on Van Gogh, who met him during his time in Paris, and Toulouse-Lautrec, a close friend who also admired his work. Some sources claim that Anquetin, Van Gogh, Toulouse-Lautrec and Émile Bernard met at Cormon's academy. Because of his great skill, Anquetin experimented with many of the techniques he encountered, perhaps at the expense of developing a real personality of his own. In 1887 the rigours of Pointillism and Seurat's theories on 'scientific Impressionism' seduced him, but not for long. In 1888 he met Émile Bernard and his friends, and discovered that they all shared an enthusiasm for the work of Gauguin, his contemporary subjects and flat areas of colour with bold outlines, which was known at the time as Gauguin's Synthetism. Artists would gather at the Café Volpini, where they also exhibited their Symbolist/Synthetist paintings. Following on from their reflections on the works of Gaugin, Bernard and Anquetin defined one aspect of his work under the term 'Cloisonnism'. The question of which of them came up with this term would later be heavily disputed....


Antoyan, Arès  

American, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in France from 1981, naturalised French.

Born 30 January 1955, in Los Angeles, of Armenian parentage.



Arès Antoyan is the son of the painter Kero Antoyan. He studied at the California Institute of the Arts. Foremost a painter of women, Antoyan chooses sex symbols as his models. In a sensual, dreamlike context that mirrors life and death, he dresses, or rather undresses, them and depicts them scantily clad and striking poses designed to stimulate a reaction in the viewer. In ...


Apperley, George or Jorge Owen Wynne  

British, 20th century, male.

Active in Spain.

Born 17 June 1884, in Ventnor (Isle of Wight); died 1960, in Tangier.

Painter, watercolourist. Figure compositions, mythological subjects.


Apperley was born into a military and puritanical family, and had to fight family opposition to his artistic calling. In ...


Armas, Ximena  

Chilean, 20th – 21st century, female.

Active in France.

Born 1946, in Chile.



In Paris in the 1980s, Ximena Armas took part in the Salon des Grands et Jeunes d'Aujourd'hui. In 2003 she exhibited her work at a solo exhibition at the Musée Roybet Fould in Courbevoie....


Armstrong, John  

British, 20th century, male.

Born 14 November 1893, in Hastings; died 1973.

Painter (gouache), illustrator, designer. Figure compositions. Murals, film and stage sets.


Unit One group.

John Armstrong studied at Cambridge University and St John's Wood School of Art. From 1933, the year he was appointed a member of the influential Unit One group, he was influenced by the repercussions of Surrealism. During World War II he served as an official war artist. At the beginning of the 1950s, he abandoned Surrealism, returning to his former attraction for the language of symbols, which for him meant working out a personal symbolic syntax, implemented in a series of ambitious compositions with titles that revealed their ideological content: ...


Aronson, David  

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1923, in Shilova, Lithuania; died, 2 July 2015, in Sudbury, Massachusetts.

Painter, sculptor, pastellist. Figures, portraits.


David Aronson was the son of a rabbi and arrived in the USA at the age of five. He founded the School of Art at the University of Boston, which he ran for 30 years. He received many awards including the Purchase Prize at the National Academy of Fine Arts in ...


Artot, Paul  

Belgian, 20th century, male.

Born 1875, in Brussels; died 1958, in Brussels.

Painter, engraver.


Paul Artot studied under Portaels at the art academy in Brussels, and went on a study trip to Italy. He was a member of the Art Circle ( Cercle pour l'Art...