It depicts life in vivid colours and speaks so much about oneself, the painter’s ambitions, his environment, and his state. It has become a tool not just for individual expression but most of all, a tool for maintaining good memories of history’s most important people and events.
Following are a few of the highlights in America’s painting background. Let us take a look at how painting developed in America and some of the greatest American painters who in one way or another marked a lasting imprint in the history of American art.
The puritan values of early English settlers in North America were so acute that they shunned all sorts of luxury such as artistic expressions like painting, a flourishing art in Europe particularly in England. Starting to settle in a strange land was quite tough for these new settlers so that they busied themselves with only the most critical things.
But, there were already some portraits mentioned during the first years of the settlement. They were naturally artistic as they trained themselves by moving from one spot to another to paint portraits of ordinary people. Coaching in an art college was contrary to their strict Puritan way of life.
Apparently, early Americans’ interest in painting grew larger that many years later after having established their life in the united states, American painters started to go to England to study.
Although early American painters were highly influenced by artistic styles currently developed in Europe, as years passed by they started to produce their own style in painting. In 19th century in particular, remarkable gap between paintings of American painters and those of their European counterparts started to appear. This distinctive American style wasn’t only shown by American painters but also as other American artists, particularly in the area of architecture.
Diversity in painting designs of American painters was also encouraged by the nation’s big geographical size. American painters from every region showed variations in their own works. Moreover, there were differences in the functions of American painters residing in the cities and people of American painters residing in rural areas.
Today it’s now known as The National Academy, which is also a museum and a school for fine arts.
Society of American Artists
First members of the Society of American Artists include American painters Robert Swain Gifford, an American landscape painter; John Henry Twachtman, hottest impressionist landscape painter in his time; John LaFarge who was also renowned for his stained glass windows and writings; and Albert Pinkham Ryder, famous for his seascapes. These American painters left the National Academy of Design and formed their own association since the first failed to fulfill their needs as musicians.
Ten American Painters
Because of the Society of American Artists’ rising commercialism, ten important American painters resigned from the institution and were know as the”Six American Painters.” Among them were John Henry Twachtman, Thomas Wilmer Dewing, Edmund Charles Tarbell, and Frank Weston Benson. The group was identified as impressionists.