John Singer Sargent
John Singer Sargent Locations
John Singer Sargent (January 12, 1856 ?C April 14, 1925) was the most successful portrait painter of his era. During his career, he created roughly 900 oil paintings and more than 2,000 watercolors, as well as countless sketches and charcoal drawings. His oeuvre documents worldwide travel, from Venice to the Tyrol, Corfu, the Middle East, Montana, Maine, and Florida.
Before Sargent??s birth, his father FitzWilliam was an eye surgeon at the Wills Hospital in Philadelphia. After his older sister died at the age of two, his mother Mary (n??e Singer) suffered a mental collapse and the couple decided to go abroad to recover. They remained nomadic ex-patriates for the rest of their lives. Though based in Paris, Sargent??s parents moved regularly with the seasons to the sea and the mountain resorts in France, Germany, Italy, and Switzerland. While she was pregnant, they stopped in Florence, Italy because of a cholera epidemic, and there Sargent was born in 1856. A year later, his sister Mary was born. After her birth FitzWilliam reluctantly resigned his post in Philadelphia and accepted his wife??s entreaties to remain abroad. They lived modestly on a small inheritance and savings, living an isolated life with their children and generally avoiding society and other Americans except for friends in the art world. Four more children were born abroad of whom two lived past childhood.
Though his father was a patient teacher of basic subjects, young Sargent was a rambunctious child, more interested in outdoor activities than his studies. As his father wrote home, ??He is quite a close observer of animated nature.?? Contrary to his father, his mother was quite convinced that traveling around Europe, visiting museums and churches, would give young Sargent a satisfactory education. Several attempts to give him formal schooling failed, owning mostly to their itinerant life. She was a fine amateur artist and his father was a skilled medical illustrator. Early on, she gave him sketchbooks and encouraged drawing excursions. Young Sargent worked with care on his drawings, and he enthusiastically copied images from the Illustrated London News of ships and made detailed sketches of landscapes. FitzWilliam had hoped that his son??s interest in ships and the sea might lead him toward a naval career.
At thirteen, his mother reported that John ??sketches quite nicely, & has a remarkably quick and correct eye. If we could afford to give him really good lessons, he would soon be quite a little artist.?? At age thirteen, he received some watercolor lessons from Carl Welsch, a German landscape painter. Though his education was far from complete, Sargent grew up to be a highly literate and cosmopolitan young man, accomplished in art, music, and literature. He was fluent in French, Italian, and German. At seventeen, Sargent was described as ??willful, curious, determined and strong?? (after his mother) yet shy, generous, and modest (after his father). He was well-acquainted with many of the great masters from first hand observation, as he wrote in 1874, ??I have learned in Venice to admire Tintoretto immensely and to consider him perhaps second only to Michael Angelo and Titian.?? Related Paintings of John Singer Sargent :. | Madame X | Portrait of Eugenia Huici | Arthur Balfour | Sargent John Singer Catherine Vlasto | George Washington Vanderbilt |
Related Artists:SAVOLDO, Giovanni Girolamo
Italian Mannerist Painter, ca.1480-1548GUARIENTO d Arpo
Italian painter (active 1338-1368 in Padua)Gabriel Jacques de Saint-Aubin
French Painter, 1724-1780,Draughtsman, etcher and painter, brother of (1) Charles-Germain de Saint-Aubin. He studied with the painters Etienne Jeaurat and Hyacinthe Colin de Vermont, but failed three times to win the Prix de Rome (competition paintings, 1752-4; Paris, Louvre). He broke with the Academie Royale, preferring to support and exhibit at the Academie de St Luc. Although he continued to paint such pictures as a Street Show in Paris (c. 1760; London, N.G.; other examples in Rouen, Mus. B.-A.), he is best known as a draughtsman and etcher. He was a passionate and unconventional observer of the sights of the Paris streets and of the social scene. Dacier saw him as the 'man who drew at all times and in all places', and his contemporary Jean-Baptiste Greuze spoke of his 'priapism of draughtsmanship'. In his many drawings he combined pencil, black and red chalk, bistre, ink and watercolour to create dazzling spontaneous effects. He drew incidents that struck him as he wandered the streets, or entertainments that he attended. He recorded them, noting dates and times, in sketchbooks (e.g. Paris, Louvre and Stockholm, Nmus.) or sometimes in the margins and blank pages of printed books that he was carrying (such as a volume of the poems of Jean-Michel Sedaine, in the Mus. Cond?, Chantilly). These drawings of contemporary incidents include the Fire at the Foire Saint-Germain on the Night of 16-17 May 1762 (ex-David Weill priv. col.) and the Crowning of Voltaire at the Theetre-Franeais in 1778 (Paris, Louvre; see fig.). He went regularly to the Salon of the Academie Royale and to art sales, covering the margins and flyleaves of his sale catalogues and Salon livrets with tiny sketches of works of art and the passing scene. One hundred of these illustrated catalogues were among his effects when he died, and of these about a third survive. These include the livrets for the Salons of 1761, 1769 and 1777 (all Paris, Bib. N.), as well as the catalogues of the sales of Louis-Michel van Loo in 1772 and Charles Natoire in 1778 (both Paris, Bib. N.), and that of Pierre-Jean Mariette in 1775 (Boston, MA, Mus. F.A.). Together with his etchings and large watercolours (e.g. Paris, Louvre) of the Louvre's Salon Carre at the time of the exhibitions of 1753, 1767 and 1769,