Franz Bischoff is the first in a series of short posts to help you discover artists, early and modern, you may not have heard of before. For me, stumbling on an artist’s work that gets me excited to get back to the easel is a bit like opening a present at Christmas.
I’ve been keeping files of artists’ work that I admire since the mid-80s. In the early days it was paper files, today it’s digital folders. For me they are like picture books that I can open when I need some inspiration or direction during a troublesome painting experience.
I hope a post here and there ends up feeling a bit like Christmas for you!
Franz Bischoff’s paintings are a celebration of color. He was a master at manipulating colors to make shadows and shapes sing.
Look at the blues and lavenders in the shadows that bring so much life to the painting.
On a different note, some of our members get discouraged occasionally when they feel their paintings aren’t perfect. Nobody’s paintings are perfect.
In the painting above, I love the vibrant colors, but I have no idea what that dark tree mass on the right is or what is happening when it morphs into lighter yellow-green and then into what looks like a bright yellow wall.
The large orange wall facing the viewer, where it blends into the dark green mass on the right, seems to pop forward rather than moving under the plant. Also, the plant shape just kind of melts over the top of the wall like a wig. I assume it’s some type of ivy, but it doesn’t explain itself well.
Obviously, like all the other paintings in the world, it isn’t without flaws. That doesn’t stop me from loving the painting though.
How Franz Bischoff Became a Landscape Painter
Bischoff was trained in design and ceramic painting in Austria where he grew up. After immigrating to America and setting up his own studio his reputation as a china decorator and teacher soared.
He made a lot of money and he and his family traveled the country. When he was 36, he fell in love with California and the landscape painting movement happening there. He left New York, built a studio in Los Angeles, and spent the rest of his life as a plein air landscape and flower painter.
Conclusion – Keep Learning from Past Masters
This was a short teaser about Franz Bischoff meant simply to introduce you to some art that I personally admire. I plan to add a post regularly showing work from admirable artists both historical and modern.
Please let us know in the comments below who some of your favorite artists are past and present.
p.s. Bischoff was one of the early founders of the California Art Club. Peter and Elaine Adams have tirelessly turned the club into a world-class organization for women and men around the world. I would highly recommend you check it out.
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Thank you, Bill. I love his work and Impressionistic feel but I do agree about the green on the right and—what is the half-round behind the orange building? At first I thought it was a mountain but it is so colorful. I love trying to figure it out!
I agree Michele, the round wall in the upper right is odd. I believe it’s a top-of-wall facade for decorative purposes, but it is painted in a way that is a bit off-putting. What a wonderful realization though that we can gain tremendous joy from a painting even when it might not be ‘perfect’. With paintings like Bischoff’s I doubt most admirers will notice things like that as much as an artist will who is trying to dissect and learn from his process.