Portrait: August Macke, a German Expressionist painter

28 July 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  10 minutes

Selbstporträt mit Hut (1909) by August Macke

Selbstporträt mit Hut (1909) by August Macke

August Robert Ludwig Macke was a German Expressionist painter. He was one of the leading members of the German Expressionist group Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider). He lived during a particularly innovative time for German art: he saw the development of the main German Expressionist movements as well as the arrival of the successive avant-garde movements which were forming in the rest of Europe. Like a true artist of his time, Macke knew how to integrate into his painting the elements of the avant-garde which most interested him. Like his friend Franz Marc and Otto Soltau, he was one of the young German artists who died in the First World War. The August-Macke-Haus is a museum dedicated to August Macke founded in 1991. It is located in Macke’s former home in Bonn, where he lived from 1911 to 1914.   read more…

Portrait: Paul Klee, painter and graphic artist

23 June 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  8 minutes

Paul Klee by Hugo Erfurth in 1927

Paul Klee by Hugo Erfurth in 1927

Paul Klee was a Swiss-born German artist. His highly individual style was influenced by movements in art that included expressionism, cubism, and surrealism. Klee was a natural draftsman who experimented with and eventually deeply explored color theory, writing about it extensively; his lectures Writings on Form and Design Theory (Schriften zur Form und Gestaltungslehre), published in English as the Paul Klee Notebooks, are held to be as important for modern art as Leonardo da Vinci‘s A Treatise on Painting for the Renaissance. He and his colleague, Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky, both taught at the Bauhaus school of art, design and architecture in Germany. His works reflect his dry humor and his sometimes childlike perspective, his personal moods and beliefs, and his musicality.   read more…

Portrait: Saladin, the most famous Kurd in history

26 May 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  14 minutes

Portrait of Saladin © The Trustees of the British Museum/cc-by-nc-sa-4.0

Portrait of Saladin © The Trustees of the British Museum/cc-by-nc-sa-4.0

Al-Nasir Salah al-Din Yusuf ibn Ayyub, better known simply as alah ad-Din or Saladin, was a Sunni Muslim Kurd and the first sultan of Egypt and Syria and founder of the Ayyubid dynasty. Saladin led the Muslim military campaign against the Crusader states in the Levant. At the height of his power, his sultanate spanned Egypt, Syria, the Jazira (Upper Mesopotamia), the Hejaz (western Arabia), Yemen, parts of western North Africa, and Nubia.   read more…

Portrait: Friedrich von Schiller, poet, philosopher, physician, historian, and playwright

21 April 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  11 minutes

Friedrich Schiller by Ludovike Simanowiz (1793 or 1794)

Friedrich Schiller by Ludovike Simanowiz (1793 or 1794)

Johann Christoph Friedrich (von) Schiller was a German poet, philosopher, physician, historian, and playwright. During the last seventeen years of his life (1788–1805), Schiller developed a productive, if complicated, friendship with the already famous and influential Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. They frequently discussed issues concerning aesthetics, and Schiller encouraged Goethe to finish works he left as sketches. This relationship and these discussions led to a period now referred to as Weimar Classicism. They also worked together on Xenien, a collection of short satirical poems in which both Schiller and Goethe challenge opponents of their philosophical vision.   read more…

Portrait: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, national poet and naturalist

24 March 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  7 minutes

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe by Joseph Karl Stieler in 1828

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe by Joseph Karl Stieler in 1828

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was a German poet, playwright, novelist, scientist, statesman, theatre director, critic, and amateur artist. His works include: four novels; epic and lyric poetry; prose and verse dramas; memoirs; an autobiography; literary and aesthetic criticism; and treatises on botany, anatomy, and colour. He is considered to be the greatest German literary figure of the modern era.   read more…

Portrait: Rudolf Diesel, inventor of the Diesel engine

24 February 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  14 minutes

Rudolf Diesel © volvotrucks.com

Rudolf Diesel © volvotrucks.com

Rudolf Christian Karl Diesel was a German inventor and mechanical engineer, famous for the invention of the Diesel engine, and for his suspicious death at sea. Diesel was the namesake of the 1942 film Diesel. The first successful Diesel engine ran in 1897 and is now on display at the German Technical Museum in Munich. Rudolf Diesel obtained patents for his design in Germany and other countries, including the United States. He was inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame in 1978.   read more…

Portrait: Jules Verne, science fiction writer

23 December 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  9 minutes

Félix Nadar (1820-1910) portraits Jules Verne

Félix Nadar (1820-1910) portraits Jules Verne

Jules Gabriel Verne was a French novelist, poet, and playwright. His collaboration with the publisher Pierre-Jules Hetzel led to the creation of the Voyages extraordinaires, a series of bestselling adventure novels including Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864), Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (1870), and Around the World in Eighty Days (1872).   read more…

Portrait: Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher

25 November 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  6 minutes

Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher by Ernst Gebauer, around 1815

Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher by Ernst Gebauer, around 1815

Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher, Fürst von Wahlstatt (16 December 1742 – 12 September 1819), Graf (count), later elevated to Fürst (sovereign prince) von Wahlstatt, was a Prussian Generalfeldmarschall (field marshal). He earned his greatest recognition after leading his army against Napoleon I at the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig in 1813 and the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.   read more…

Portrait: Christopher Columbus, Italian navigator and explorer

28 October 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  7 minutes

Christopher Columbus by Sebastiano del Piombo

Christopher Columbus by Sebastiano del Piombo

Christopher Columbus was an Italian explorer and navigator who completed four voyages across the Atlantic Ocean, opening the way for European exploration and colonization of the Americas. His expeditions, sponsored by the Catholic Monarchs of Spain, were the first European contact with the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. After a remarkable odyssey, his bones are now in the Seville Cathedral in Spain.   read more…

Return to TopReturn to Top