John singer Sargent

John singer Sargent - 1

  • Date of birth: 12 Jan 1856
  • Date of death: 14 APR 1925
  • Country: USA


“Belle epoque”, the time between the last decade of the XIX century and the beginning of the First world war in 1914, not in vain got its name. It really was “the beautiful era”, the last Bastion of a vanishing world, the calm before the storm of the terrible disaster to humanity, which was later called the great war. This period of time gave civilization many great works and introduced the world to the creativity of great people. Among them was a talented artist and incredibly gifted colorist John singer Sargent (1856 – 1925).

The future artist was born in the sign for the place in Florence. His family had no relationship to art, his father was a doctor. Although Sargent was considered an American, in fact he was a true “man of peace”, cosmopolitan. He learned to paint in Italy, France and Germany, i.e. those countries which were at the moment real focus of artistic ideas.

In France, the artist was acquainted with the Impressionists, later moving closer to them especially close, he was friendly with Claude Monet. However, in spirit he was closer to the classics, especially such geniuses portrait as van Dyck and Gainsborough. Many Impressionists did not consider Sargent teacher, artist and carried him to the classics, which has “outlived its time”. History has placed all points over “And”. The combination of the classical approach to the image, nice composition and unique vision of color combined with masterful craftsmanship has made the Sargent one of the best portraitists of his time.

The artist traveled extensively and repeatedly moved from one country to another, but especially a lot of the time he spent in France and the UK. Like his portraits, the master always looked like a true dandy – beautiful, well maintained, beautifully and tastefully dressed. This refined taste was reflected in his magnificent portraits, both in female and male.

Sargent became fashionable “court” painter, his portraits are extremely prestigious to have in their living rooms, the rich and famous ladies and gentlemen are literally lining up for him, so the artist painted their portrait. At the same time and it creates a landmark work, written to order, and the dictates of the heart. Such works include “Daughters of Edward Darley Bojt”. The composition of this picture, many saw the similarity with the famous painting “Las Meninas” one of her favorite artists Sargent – Velazquez.

Indeed, semantic and compositional similarities there are, the more that the artist himself never denied it. He has copied historical canvas and carefully studied it. However, the emergence of “Daughters” caused a very mixed reviews, and even criticism in his address. Many have tried to search the fabric of hidden meaning and coded messages, as in Velazquez. In fact, he performed masterfully light hand of a talented fleeting image of a happy childhood spent in a close-knit and loving family.

Sargent was a prolific artist and left behind a tremendous legacy. He left more than 900 works, executed in oil, about 2000 watercolor paintings, graphic works, sketches and thumbnails. Most of the works are in different museums around the world, including in America, France and other countries. His paintings are kept in private collections. This artist is remembered for its feature and adherence to their own style, recognizable and at the same time, absolutely classical in its spirit.

In addition to painting, the artist was fond of chess and is played. To have survived three of his paintings on the theme of this intellectual game. The master died in April 1925 in London.