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Anders Leonard Zorn (18 Feb. 1860 – 22 Aug. 1920); one of Sweden’s foremost artists. Achieved international success as a painter, sculptor and printmaker in etching. One of the most famous living artists at the turn of the 20th century, Anders Zorn dazzled the art world with his bravura paintings, watercolors, and etchings. His early travels took him to Spain and Algeria where the intense color and light inspired the virtuoso watercolorist to perfect his craft. In Paris he emulated the Impressionists as a chronicler of modern life, while in America he rivaled John Singer Sargent as the most sought-after portraitist of glittering high society. Back at home Zorn captured his native folk culture and the serenity of the Nordic landscape.
...Zorn, one of the most brilliant and most powerful painters of the day, is the son of a Dalar peasant. When he was a raw lad presented himself before some big Academician in the capital, and broached his wishes and his ambition, the great man good naturedly advised the youth to go back to his village, suggesting I believe, the more humble though no less honorable vocation of a village shoemaker – “for you will never become a painter!” “Oh yes, I shall,” Zorn quietly replied; and he was right. Zorn can do anything; he paints in oil and water color, he etches, he carves, he is a sculptor, he works in gold and silver, and he does all things well. He has a brilliant technique, a wonderful verve; he can fasten to his canvas a movement, a step in an unsurpassable manner, can endow a portrait with a power, a plastic emphasis, which almost makes it leave the frame. He too is fond of color – at least in some of his pictures of the comedy of Dalar women, in their picturesque national dresses.
...Zorn paints portraits in Hungary, in Spain, in America; he hunts in Leicestershire, and runs on snow shoes.... He is at the same time a complete cosmopolitan...