Friday, August 28, 2015

Portraits of Women - The evolution of American artist Alfred Henry Maurer's (1868-1932) images of women


Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Girl In White 1901

Alfred Henry Maurer (1868–1932) became an early American modernist painter. Maurer was born in New York City, the son of German-born Louis Maurer, a lithographer for Currier and Ives. At age 16, Maurer quit school to work at his father's lithographic firm.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) An Arrangement 1901

In 1897, after studying with the sculptor John Quincy Adams Ward and painter William Merritt Chase, Maurer left for Paris where he stayed the next 4 years, joining a circle of American & French artists. At the time, Maurer's style was realist.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) The Black Cape c 1901

Briefly returning to New York, determined to show his skeptical father that he could paint, Maurer painted one of his most famous paintings "An Arrangement," using a woman next door as a model & completing the work (on a borrowed piece of cardboard) in a matter of hours. His painting An Arrangement, received first prize at the 1901 Carnegie International Exhibition.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Lady with a Japanese Fan

At 36, in Paris, deviating from what everyone called "acceptable" painting styles, Maurer changed his methods sharply & painted only in the cubist and fauvist manner, at the risk of his international reputation.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Woman With a Pink Bow

"The transition from the old school to the new is not an easy one ... When I decided to make the change, I had to lay aside my brushes for almost a month and think nothing but Impressionism. Then I went at it slowly and timidly, feeling my way. I am still in transition, I know. I can’t tell what tomorrow will bring about." - Alfred Maurer stated in a 1908 New York Times article.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Landscape of Provence c 1920

As an emerging, early American avant-garde painter in 1909, he had a two-man exhibition with John Marin in New York City. Four of his paintings were included in the Armory Show of 1913.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Head of a Woman

Leaving Paris shortly before World War I, he returned to his father's house only to be denied support. For the next 17 years Maurer painted in a garret in his father's house & was able to gain no critical acclaim.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Head 1920

An early American modernist, he was friends with many avant-garde American artists like Arthur Dove, Marsden Hartley, John Marin & others until his death in 1932. Maurer took his own life by hanging several weeks after his father's death.

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Two Heads with Yellow Background 1929

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Head of a Girl 1929

Alfred Henry Maurer (American painter, 1868-1932) Portrait of a Girl with a Gray Background c 1930


1 comment:

  1. thank you so much,It's a lucky chance for me to appreciate good paintings.

    ReplyDelete