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Article

Jan Jaap Heij

(b The Hague, Aug 18, 1871; d Amsterdam, Oct 19, 1934).

Dutch printmaker and painter. He trained at the Academie voor Beeldende Kunsten in The Hague, where he subsequently taught graphic art (1893–1911). In 1911 he succeeded Pieter Dupont as professor in graphics at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam under the directorship of Antoon Derkinderen. In the early years of his career Aarts produced some paintings using the pointillist technique, mostly landscapes (The Hague, Gemeentemus.); he also carved some sculptures in wood. He is, however, best known for his graphic work. In technique and subject-matter, his prints have a great deal in common with those of Dupont. As the latter’s successor he devoted himself to the revival of engraving, which his predecessor had reintroduced; his own experiments in this medium (in particular his scenes with diggers and beggars, all c. 1900) are considered milestones in early 20th-century Dutch printmaking. He also applied his skills to etching, lithography, woodcutting and wood-engraving; of the latter his ...

Article

Pamela H. Simpson

(b Philadelphia, PA, April 1, 1852; d London, Aug 1, 1911).

American painter, illustrator, and muralist, active also in England. Abbey began his art studies at the age of 14 in his native Philadelphia where he worked with Isaac L. Williams (1817–95). Two years later he enrolled in night classes at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art working under Christian Schussele (1824–1979), but by then Abbey was already a published illustrator. In the 1870s his drawings appeared in numerous publications, but it was his work for Harper & Brothers that proved most important to his career. In 1871 he moved to New York, and in 1878, Harper’s sent him on a research trip to England. He found such affinity with the country that he made it his home for the rest of his life. After 1889 he devoted more time to painting, was elected a Royal Academician in 1898, and in 1902 was chosen by Edward VII (...

Article

V. V. Vanslov

(Pavlovich)

(b Kharkiv, April 16, 1901; d Moscow, Sept 6, 1968).

Russian stage designer, director, painter and graphic artist of Ukranian birth. He studied in Petrograd (now St Petersburg) from 1915 to 1919 in an artists’ workshop under Mstislav Dobuzhinsky, Aleksandr Yakovlev and Vasily Shukhayev. From 1920 to 1922 he worked as a stage designer in Khar’kov (now Kharkiv). In 1923 he returned to Petrograd, where he worked as a book illustrator and stage designer at the Theatre of Musical Comedy, the Theatre of Drama and the Gor’ky Bol’shoy Theatre of Drama; he also worked in Moscow, at the Theatre of the Revolution, the Vakhtangov Theatre and the Moscow Art Theatre (MKhAT). From 1929 he worked as a director, designing his own productions. He was the Art Director of the Leningrad Theatre of Comedy (1935–49), where the most notable productions he directed and designed were Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night (1938), Lope de Vega’s Dog in the Manger and ...

Article

(Isayevich)

(b Vinnitsa, Ukraine, Dec 22, 1889; d Leningrad [now St Petersburg], Dec 12, 1970).

Russian painter, graphic artist, sculptor and designer of Ukrainian birth. He studied painting at the School of Art in Odessa (1901–7) under Kiriak Kostandi (1852–1921), at the same time attending classes in sculpture. In 1908–9 he made a series of pointillist paintings. He visited Vienna and Munich in 1910 before going to Paris, where he worked at Vasil’yeva’s Free Russian Academy until 1912, producing paintings on Jewish themes and studying Cubism. In 1912 he went to St Petersburg, where he painted a number of Cubist portraits, for example of the poet Anna Akhmatova (1914; St Petersburg, Rus. Mus.). His Cubist work makes much use of faceting and transparent planes. From 1918 to 1921 he taught at the Department of Visual Arts (IZO) of Narkompros in Petrograd, but he was criticized for his attempts to identify Futurism with the art of the proletariat. Al’tman became well known as the designer of post-Revolutionary mass parades and monuments, for example the celebration of the first anniversary of the Revolution on ...

Article

Els Maréchal

(b Brussels, Oct 19, 1927).

Belgian painter, draughtsman, printmaker and film maker. He studied book illustration and typography at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture et des Arts Décoratifs from 1944 to 1946. In 1947 he became a member of the Jeune Peinture Belge group and had his first one-man exhibition in the Galerie Lou Cosyn in Brussels. In 1949 he became a founder-member of the Cobra movement after meeting Christian Dotremont. With a number of artist friends he set up a type of research centre and meeting-place in Brussels, the Ateliers du Marais. Towards the end of 1951 he went to Paris, moving to Japan in 1955 to study the art of calligraphy, also making a film called Calligraphie japonaise (1956). He adopted the Oriental manner of painting, whereby the paper is spread on the floor and the artist leans over the work holding the bottle of ink, allowing a greater freedom of movement. In ...

Article

Roman Prahl

(b Mirotice, nr Písek, Nov 18, 1852; d Prague, July 10, 1913).

Czech painter, illustrator and designer. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague under Josef Mathias von Trenkwald (1824–97) and Jan Swerts (1820–79), and he rarely travelled, except to Vienna in 1873 and Italy in 1877. He was one of the leading Bohemian artists of the so-called Generation of the National Theatre. The décor of this theatre, opened in 1881 and again after a fire in 1883, marked a national artistic rebirth. Aleš, together with František Ženíšek, had won the competition in 1877 to decorate the walls, lunettes and ceilings of the theatre foyer. Aleš’s cycle My Country, designed for the lunettes, is one of the most famous Czech works of art.

In the late 1870s Aleš emerged as a draughtsman and painter with a rich imagination. He outlined many cycles to be finished later and he studied heraldry, which contributed to the development of his original ornamental style. He applied this style for the first time on painted furniture, as in ...

Article

Eleanor Jones Harvey

(b Allegheny, PA, Oct 7, 1856; d New York, May 31, 1915).

American painter and illustrator. He began his career in New York in 1875 as a political cartoonist and illustrator for Harper’s Weekly. In 1877 he went to Paris for his first formal art training, and then to Munich, where he enrolled at the Kunstakademie under Gyuala Benczúr. In 1878 he joined a colony of American painters established by Frank Duveneck in Polling, Bavaria. In 1879 they travelled to Italy, where Alexander formed friendships with James McNeill Whistler and Henry James. In 1881 he returned to New York, working as an illustrator for Harper’s, as a drawing instructor at Princeton and as a highly successful society portrait painter (see fig.). He also exhibited at the National Academy of Design. By 1893 his reputation in both Europe and America had soared, and in 1895 he was awarded a prestigious commission for a series of murals entitled the Evolution of the Book...

Article

Christopher Newall

(b Burton on Trent, Staffs, Sept 26, 1848; d Haslemere, Surrey, Sept 28, 1926).

English illustrator and painter. The daughter of a physician, she was brought up in Altrincham, Ches, and, after her father’s death in 1862, in Birmingham. She studied at the Birmingham School of Design and, from 1867, at the Royal Academy Schools, London. From 1869 she provided illustrations for Joseph Swain and subsequently for the Graphic and Cornhill magazines. She exhibited watercolours at the Dudley Gallery. In 1874 she married the Irish poet William Allingham, and her consequent financial independence allowed her to abandon black-and-white illustration. Her new circle of friends included Tennyson, Ruskin and Thomas Carlyle, whose portrait she drew (version of 1879; Edinburgh, N.P.G.). In 1875 she was elected an associate of the Old Water-Colour Society (she became a full member in 1890 after the prohibition on lady members was withdrawn); she was a regular exhibitor there.

After 1881, when the family moved to Witley, Surrey, Allingham developed a characteristic style and subject-matter in her watercolours: views of the vernacular architecture of southern England, garden scenes (such as ...

Article

Roberto Pontual

(b São Paulo, 1935).

Brazilian painter and printmaker. After studying engraving in São Paulo, he moved to New York in 1959 to complete his studies at the Pratt Graphic Center, where his contact with international Pop art merged with his own interest in Brazilian popular imagery, for example in the portfolio of woodcuts Mine and Yours (1967). Immediately afterwards he began painting ambiguous and ironic still-lifes collectively titled Brasíliana, which use bananas as symbols of underdevelopment and exploitation, for example BR-1 SP (1970; São Paulo, Pin. Estado) and Bananas (1971; Washington, DC, Mus. Mod. A. Latin America). In 1971 he won a trip abroad in the National Salon of Modern Art (Rio de Janeiro), which took him again to New York between 1972 and 1973. On his return to São Paulo he began the series Battlegrounds, in which he submitted the previously reclining bananas to slashing, torture and putrefaction. Subsequently shapes were reorganized into configurations of an undramatic Surrealism, playful, colourful, tumescent and as firmly rooted as ever in his native Brazil and Latin America....

Article

José Miguel Rojas

(b San José, June 1, 1907; d 1998).

Costa Rican engraver, painter, illustrator, draughtsman, writer and critic. He studied for a year from 1931 at the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes but was otherwise initially self-taught, using Louis Gonse’s L’Art japonais (Paris, 1883) as a source. He produced a series of caricature drawings, influenced by Cubism, in the Album de dibujos de 1926. During 1929 he met the sculptors Juan Manuel Sánchez and Francisco Zúñiga (the latter was also a printmaker), and through his interest in German and Mexican Expressionist printmakers, he developed a passion for wood-engraving. His first wood-engravings were published in the periodical Repertorio Americano (1929). He went on to contribute wood-engravings and drawings to collections of short stories and poetry, educational books, periodicals and newspapers. In 1931 he taught drawing and wood-engraving at the Escuela Normal in Heredia. He exhibited at the Salones Anuales de Artes Plásticas in San José (1931–6...

Article

Hana Larvová

(b Pavlíkov, nr Rakovník, Sept 14, 1936).

Czech draughtsman, painter and printmaker. From 1955 to 1961 he studied painting and graphic art at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. From 1961 to 1968 he worked at the Black Theatre of Jiří Srnec, a centre of the Prague avant-garde. He was assistant to Professors Jiří Trnka and Zdeněk Sklenář at the Faculty of Applied Art in Prague from 1969 to 1973, and in 1982–4 his work was shown at the central exhibition of the Biennale in Venice. His primary means of expression is drawing. His work forms closed complexes that capture moments of human existence, either in connection with ancient myths and legends or as aspects of contemporary life, for example the cycles of paintings, drawings and graphics Village Dancing Girl (1960–62), Illusion and Reality (1980–83; 1981, Ljubljana, Grand Prix BIB; 1982, Venice Biennale) and Apocalyptic Genetics (1982–3) and the cycle of paintings ...

Article

Anne Pastori Zumbach

[Albrecht]

(b Anet, Berne, April 1, 1831; d Anet, July 16, 1910).

Swiss painter and illustrator. An early interest in art was kindled by visiting the exhibitions of the Société des Amis des Arts in Neuchâtel in 1842, and he took private drawing lessons with Louis Wallinger (1819–86) between 1845 and 1848. However he began studying theology in Berne in 1851, continuing these studies at the university in Halle. During his stay in Germany he became acquainted with major German collections, notably the Gemäldegalerie in Dresden, which impressed him deeply. His father reluctantly consented to an artistic career, and in 1854 Anker moved to Paris, where he joined the studio of Charles Gleyre. He studied at the Ecole Impériale des Beaux-Arts in Paris from 1855 until c. 1860, meanwhile selling portraits. In 1861 he travelled in nothern Italy, copying Old Masters such as Titian and Correggio.

In the course of this training Anker started painting large original compositions, such as ...

Article

R. W. A. Bionda

[Flor; Pieter Florentius Nicolaas Jacobus]

(b Surabaya, Java, June 9, 1864; d The Hague, June 9, 1925).

Dutch painter, illustrator and printmaker. He moved to the Netherlands c. 1875, and was taught first by Johan Hendrik Frederik Conrad Nachtweh (1857–1941). He attended the Rijksacademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam from 1883 to 1888, studying under August Allebé and Barend Wijnveld (1820–1902). He then spent a year studying life drawing at the Koninklijke Academie voor Schone Kunsten in Antwerp under Charles Verlat before returning to Amsterdam, where he initially applied himself to painting landscapes in the countryside around The Hague and in Nunspeet in Gelderland in the style of the Hague school.

Arntzenius settled in The Hague in 1892. He was particularly active as a painter of Impressionist townscapes in both oil and watercolour from c. 1890 to 1910. His crowded street scenes with their misty, rainy atmosphere, such as The Spuistraat (The Hague, Gemeentemus.), were particularly successful and despite their greater emphasis on intimacy and tonality are reminiscent of the work of George Hendrik Breitner and Isaac Israëls. Arntzenius may have collaborated with ...

Article

Carol Magee

(b Dec 8, 1956).

Ethiopian painter, installation artist, graphic designer, and writer, active in the USA. She grew up in Addis Ababa in a family of painters before moving to the USA. She graduated from Howard University, Washington, DC, with a BFA in painting (1975) and returned in 1994 for an MFA. Her early works, based on dreams or visions, have richly textured surfaces. In the 1980s she abandoned her early palette of reds, ochres, and greens for one of purples and blues. Later paintings depict an urban environment and frequently evoke the feeling of dislocation and nostalgia that comes from living in a country that is not one’s own. Her use of themes and motifs from myriad cultures (including those of Ethiopia and Latin America) comes out of her experiences as a diasporic subject as well as the lives of the women around her. Her pieces often tell their stories, as in the Dream Dancers series (...

Article

Anne Pastori Zumbach

(b Lausanne, Aug 18, 1872; d Lausanne, Oct 11, 1957).

Swiss draughtsman, painter and illustrator. He began his career as an apprentice banker but abandoned this to study music and languages in Dresden, and then painting at the South Kensington School of Art, London (1895). In 1896 he went to Paris where he took courses in anatomy and became the pupil of Luc Olivier Merson and possibly of Whistler. In 1897 he entered the Ecole des Beaux-Arts but continued to frequent Merson’s studio. At the end of 1899, after a short stay in Bavaria, Auberjonois went to Florence, where he passed several months studying and copying the paintings of the Old Masters and painting the Tuscan landscape. Returning to Paris in 1901, he began to work independently, exhibiting for the first time at the Salon in Paris and at the Exposition Nationale Suisse des Beaux-Arts in Vevey. From 1901 to World War I he lived alternately in Paris and in Switzerland....

Article

Ruth Rosengarten

(b Vila Nova de Gaia, Jan 17, 1923; d 2002).

Portuguese painter, graphic artist, critic and art administrator . In 1947 he was a founder-member of the Grupo Surrealista de Lisboa, with which he exhibited in 1949. By 1952 he was one of the few remaining members of the original group still involved in Surrealism. That year he held a large exhibition with two other artists, showing Occultations, photographs in which parts of the images were masked by overpainting. At the time he was more interested in the process of image-making, in the unconscious genesis of images and their internal rhythms, than in the result as an aesthetic object. From the mid-1950s, Azevedo’s paintings were almost entirely abstract and gestural, with greater overt affinities to lyrical abstraction than to automatism, for example Painting (1961; Lisbon, Mus. Gulbenkian). While in smaller works he often returned to the Surrealist use of collaged photographs introducing an element of shock or surprise, in his paintings there is an overriding interest in morphological dissolution and mutation, which remains lyrical rather than violent....

Article

Mari Carmen Ramírez

(b San Juan, Aug 18, 1931).

Puerto Rican painter and printmaker. She studied painting for six years at the Real Academia de San Fernando in Madrid, woodcut and screenprinting with Lorenzo Homar at the Graphics Workshop of the Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña (1959–63), and printmaking techniques at Pratt Graphic Center in New York (1969–70). From the early 1970s she was actively involved in the development of art education in Puerto Rico, teaching at the Art Students League of San Juan and at Sacred Heart University. She was also a founding member of the Hermandad de Artistas Gráficos, president of the Fine Arts Section of the Ateneo Puertorriqueño, adviser to the National Endowment for the Arts and one of the principal advocates of the Puerto Rican women artists’ movement.

Báez’s early work was influenced by the social realism current in the 1950s and focused on nationalist, social and political subject-matter. Gradually she developed a personal iconography based on the human figure in solitary interiors and environments, through which she criticized the pretensions and manners of Puerto Rican middle-class society. In her early work she explored the painterly potential of the woodcut, later adapting other techniques to equally expressive ends, achieving rich, textural effects. Her tendency as a printmaker to find equivalents for her concerns as a painter was evident also in her screenprints, in which she used transparent layers, spatial planes and luminous colours to reinforce the psychological space in which her characters exist....

Article

R. Siva Kumar

(b Bankura, May 25, 1906; d Calcutta, Aug 2, 1980).

Indian sculptor and painter . The example of rural craftsmen inspired him to paint curtains for village theatre and posters for the nationalist demonstrations before he was taken in 1925 to the art college at Santiniketan in West Bengal by the nationalist leader, publisher and patron Ramananda Chatterjee (1865–1943). He was initially influenced by Abanindranath Tagore and Nandalal Bose but soon developed an individual perception and a keen interest in sculpture. His early outdoor sculptures, such as Sujata (1935), Santal Family (1939) and the Lamp Stand (1940), were made in situ in Santiniketan in concrete and were environmental in scale and theme.

Although best known for his sculpture, as a painter Baij, along with Benode Behari Mukherjee, was one of the first Indian artists to show a deep understanding of modern Western art. In the late 1930s and early 1940s he made reference in his formal language to Post-Impressionism, Cubism and Futurism, although he consistently derived his imagery from immediate visual experience. The combination of these influences with his natural ...

Article

Ioana Vlasiu

(b Bucharest, Jan 22, 1895; d 1979).

Romanian painter, illustrator, watercolourist, draughtsman and pastellist . She studied at the School of Fine Arts in Bucharest (1913–16) and had private lessons with the painters Eustaţiu Stoenescu (b 1885) and Gheorghe Petraşcu. Between 1919 and 1922 she studied in Paris at the Académies Julian and Ranson, and the Academia Pedro Correja d’Aranjò with Paul-Albert Laurens (b 1870), Othon Friesz, Maurice Denis, Paul Sérusier and Edouard Vuillard. During this period she showed works at the Salon des Artistes Français and the Salon d’Automne. In Romania between the World Wars she exhibited at the official Salon and with the groups New Art (Arta Nouă) and the Association of Women Painters (Asociaţia Femeilor Pictore). She was awarded prizes in Romania and abroad, for example at the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne, Paris, 1937. Her work included illustrations for books by Tudor Arghezi, ...

Article

Balthus  

Jean Clair

[Count Balthazar Klossowski de Rola]

(b Paris, Feb 29, 1908; d Rossimiere, Feb 18, 2001).

French painter, illustrator and stage designer. Appreciated for many years by only a handful of collectors, and ostensibly out of step with the modern movement, Balthus’s classically inspired work won the recognition and admiration of a wider public only late in his career. Although he received no formal training, he came from a highly artistic family background. His father, Erich Klossowski (1875–1949), was a painter and art historian, born to an aristocratic family in East Prussia and the author of a book on Daumier; his brother, Pierre Klossowski, was to become a painter and writer; and his mother, Elizabeth Spiro, was also a painter. Beginning in 1919, she engaged, under the name of Baladine, in a long-lasting relationship with the poet Rainer Maria Rilke, providing etchings to accompany many of his poems. In this environment Balthus met the writers André Gide and Pierre-Jean Jouve, as well as Pierre Bonnard, who gave him his earliest guidance. Rilke also acted as Balthus’s mentor, writing the preface for an album of drawings by the 13-year-old artist entitled ...