• Tuesday Art ATTACK- Cornelius David Krieghoff "The New Year's Day-Parade"

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    by Christian Franzen



    By Christian Franzen

    Cornelius David Krieghoff was born in Amsterdam on June 19th, 1815. As a child, Krieghoff's father began to instruct him in drawing patterns and shapes so that he could participate in the family's wallpaper business. In his adolescent years he moved with his family to Germany. It is there where he began his formal artistic training at the Academy of Fine Arts in Germany.

    In 1836, Krieghoff decided to move to America and settled in New York. He had a hard time making money as an artist so he enlisted in the United States Army. Consequently, Krieghoff spent the next three years fighting in the Indian Wars for the Westward expansion of the United States. While in the Army he found time to draw and paint; creating pieces that depicted the hard life of people living in the Western frontier.

    After he was discharged, Krieghoff moved to Montreal, Canada. He became a painter of everyday rural Canadian life and was exhibited at the Salon de la Sociéte des Artists de Montréal. Ironically, he friended several groups of Native American peoples and they became popular subjects for him to paint. Throughout this period of time in the mid 19th century, Krieghoff was frequently traveling back and forth to Europe. When in Europe he would study master works at the various museums and engage in what art scene he could as an outside.

    Krieghoff returned to the American continent for good in 1855, settling in Quebec. His paintings became very popular among the upper class as well as the blue collar people of Canada, so he began to sell a lot of work. Towards the end of his life , in 1868, Krieghoff moved to Chicago and retired from painting until his death in 1872.
  • Tuesday Art ATTACK- Godfrey Kneller "Portrait of John Locke"

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    by Alex Seastrom



    By Christian Franzen

    Sir Godfrey Kneller was born in Lubeck located in the Holy Roman Empire in the year 1646. His father, Zacharias, was an established portrait painter and began to teach his son how to paint at a young age. Kneller began to show promise as a young portrait painter and in his later teens was taken by Rembrandt van Rijn as an apprentice. After the conclusion of his apprenticeship, Kneller and his brother took a grand tour of Europe. They studied the old master throughout Italy and eventually settled in England in 1676.

    In England, Kneller became the main portrait painter for the Duke of Monmouth. While working for the Duke, Kneller met and painted a portrait of King Charles II. Kneller was swiftly appointed to Principal Painter to the King. Kneller spent his days painting portraits of the King and the members of his court. During this time he also painted many prominent philosophers including both John Locke and Isaac Newton.

    The need for Kneller to produce numerous portraits at the same time in a speedy manor lead to the founding of his own portrait studio. In the studio several different artists worked on the same portrait from sketches they had done of the subject. Kneller and his assistants relied heavily on formulaic models of the human figure so that they did not require the subject to sit for the duration of the portrait. Kneller’s portraits were in high demand by the royal courts of Great Britain until his death in 1723.

  • Tuesday Art ATTACK- Gil Elvgren " Key Situation (1967)"

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    by Christian Franzen



    By Christian Franzen

    Gil Elvgren was born on March 15th, 1914 in St. Paul, Minnesota. As a child, Elvgren loved advertisement illustrations found in magazines and storefronts. These illustrations inspired him to begin drawing at a young age. After high school he moved to Chicago to study at the American Academy of Art.

    Graduating in the midst of the Great Depression, Elvgren was lucky enough to score a job at the respected advertising agency of Stevens and Gross. Within the agency, he worked under famous advertising artist Haddon Sundblom and developed a style of soft wholesome characters similar to that of his mentor.

    In 1937, Elvgren was given a job illustrating pin-ups for the Louis F. Dow Company. These illustrations were to be used in a series of calendars that the company published. He produced over 60 pin-ups for the calendars. Elvgren became known throughout the industry for his pin-up illustrations and began to receive more contracts from various advertisers for his drawings.

    During WWII, his illustrations were used by many United States troops to decorate their aircraft. This earned him a timeless place in Americana lovers hearts and consequently his work became very collectible.

    For the remainder of his life he remained a successful illustrator who continually worked with the pin-up. He illustrated covers for many prestigious magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post and Good Housekeeping. He also continually contracted illustration jobs from Coca-Cola and General Electric until late in his life.

  • Wednesday Art ATTACK- Joyce Allan "Mollusca, New Zealand"

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    by Christian Franzen




    By Christian Franzen

    Joyce Allan was born on April 8th,1896 in Sydney, Australia. Being one of eight children, Allan spent a majority of her childhood reading. She particularly liked to read scientific books and journals that described the marine life in Australia. 

    Allan attended private school until she entered high school at the Fort Street Girls High School. When she had free time from school she would visit the Australian Museum in Sydney and help sort shells as well as animal remains. This volunteer work earned her a job as an assistant to museum curator, Charles Hedley. Allan was responsible for keeping records on the museums collections. It was here that she began to seriously use her drawing talents and sketch the contents of her museum. These drawings gained her recognition and she began to display them side by side her academic writings on the subjects. 

    While at the museum she became increasingly interested in mollusks and shelled sea life. Her drawings of these mollusks intensified with her continued studies of the subject. In 1949, she became the curator of shells at the museum. The following year she wrote and helped illustrate her book, Australian Shells. The book describes Australian mollusks in detail and remains a staple for collectors as well as the scientific community. Allan continued to work at the museum until she suffered from health complications in the mid 1950's, but still remained on of the top opinions on mollusks in Australia until her death in 1966. Her illustrations are still used by the scientific community today.
  • Art ATTACK Tuesday - Mahmoud Farshchian "Horses Ruined Village"

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    by Christian Franzen



    By Christian Franzen

    Mahmoud Farshchian was born the son of a prosperous rug merchant in Isfahan, Iran in January of 1930. Through his fathers business and artistic prowess, Farshchian developed an early interest in traditional Eastern art. He attended the Fine Arts High School in Isfahan. Once he graduated, Farshchian left Iran in order to study the works of the Western masters in Europe. Farshchian's trip to Europe opened up his mind to new forms of art and he gradually began to blend the two cultures into a very pleasing "universal style". 

    After he returned home to Iran from Europe, Farshchian began working at the Ministry of Art and Culture. Eventually he was promoted within the Ministry to Director of the Department of National Arts. Farshchian's new approach to painting was so revolutionary in Iran that he became the the leader of his own school of painting. His school subscribed to the traditional format of Persian Miniature painting while boosting the content and style into new uncharted waters. This "universal" style of Miniatures became popular in the Western Hemispheres of the world and through Farshchain's paintings, introduced many new eyes to Middle Eastern Art. 

    Farshchian occasionally teaches at the University of Tehran's School of Fine Arts. He also has his own personal museum that was opened in 2001, The Museum of Master Mahmoud Farshchian, which is also located in Tehran. 

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