Robert Henri

American, 1865 - 1929
Robert Henri was born in 1865. He was the leader of "The Eight", which was later changed to the Ashcan School, the artist group largely responsible for the Armory Show of 1913. Henri attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts as well as Academie Julian. Henri later became an influential teacher at the Art Students League and four other NYC schools. His collection of lectures, "The Art Spirit", was published in 1923 and encouraged independence and personal expression in art, paying close attention to feelings and relations to subject matter. In his own paintings, Henri used a quick, slashing approach to the canvas to record sensation. Henri broke the mold of traditionalists by painting ordinary or exotic subjects rather than the socially elite. Henri used single, dramatic strokes to suggest rather than define form. In 1908, he organized an exhibition of "The Eight", which shocked art critics. Hundreds of people came to see the revolutionary work. Henri truly believed that human dignity and joy could be found everywhere.Biography courtesy of The Caldwell Gallery,
robert henri paintings
As the leader of the Ashcan School, Robert Henri was one of the principal figures of early-twentieth century American art. Henri was a revolutionary; a powerful teacher and theorist, he urged American artists to reject the conventions of academicism and focus on real people and real places, returning art to the personal expression of feeling and sensation. Inspired by the work of Frans Hals, Rembrandt, and Velazquez, Henri painted portraits, landscapes, and urban scenes that carry a direct strength and intensity. He founded the Henri Art School in New York City in 1909 and was instrumental in organizing the key exhibitions of modern art: Macbeth Gallery's show of "The Eight" in 1908, the Exhibition of Independent Artists of 1910, and the legendary Armory Show of 1913. His work is now in the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the White House, and the Tate Gallery in London.

Biography courtesy of Questroyal Fine Art, LLC,
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