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• Biography •

Bierstadt Albert Bierstadt (January 7, 1830-February 19, 1902) was a well-known painter in the United States. He is best known for his larged, detailed landscape paintings ranging from California's Sierra Nevada Moun- tains to the Colorado Rockies.

Born in Solingen, Germany, Bierstadt came to the United States at the age of two. He returned to Germany and studied painting for three years at the Dusseldorf Akademie. He finally returned to the United States, where he became part of the Hudson River School, a group of like-minded painters. The Hudson River School style used luminism in their works, which involved romantic and carefully detailed paintings, with glowing lighting. Returning with many sketches and oil studies, he set to work in New York to create the first of the huge carefully detailed oil panoramas he became famous for. In 1863 he returned West again, in the company of the author Fitz Hugh Ludlow, whose wife he would later marry. He continued to visit the American West throughout his career.

His breathtaking paintings of natural scenery became the standard of his day for how many viewed the beauty of the west. He approached his subject in an almost exaggerated look that romanticized the scenery of the rugged mountains, waterfalls, and pristine lakes emphasizing the atmospheric effects of fog and clouds to enhance the overall work.

• Artwork •

Emigrants Crossing The Plains (Click to enlarge)Emigrants Crossing the Plains
The landscapes of this signature luminist, renowned around the world for their spectacular panoramas and the unique light, capture the pure romance and grandeur of the American West. In 1859 Bierstadt participated in an expedition to survey a route for wagon trains, and traveled through the West sketching views of the frontier for later paintings.

Mountain Out of the Mist (Click to enlarge)Mountain Out of the Mist The imposing grandeur of Bierstadt's monumental canvases inspired a generation of American landscape painters. He was captivated by the breathtaking beauty of the pristine Western landscape, with majestic mountain ranges and dramatic rock formations. Bierstadt's rugged, romanticized landscapes, painted on a grand scale with an abundance of detail and dramatic lighting, captured the imagination of the 19th century art collectors.

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