While places like Italy and France have historically stood out as the European countries that have produced the greatest artists, all European countries can claim several notable visual artists, and Sweden is no different. Here are five Swedish artists you should most certainly know.
Born in Stockholm in 1890, the painter Einar Jolin was best known for his naïve Expressionist style. He mostly painted still lifes, cityscapes, and portraits, with oils or watercolors, and always tried to accentuate the beauty of his subjects. However, Jolin did experiment with other styles. He was originally influenced by Matisse, and later, Jolin became inspired by oriental decorative art, which he first discovered at the Parisian Musée Guimet. If you like oriental design, such as that found in modern interior design or even in the wonderful eastern emeralds slot game, you are sure to be able to identify the Japanese and Chinese influences in Swedish artist Einar Jolin’s work. Before Jolin died in 1976, he had had several exhibitions at Stockholm’s Liljevalchs Konsthall, and in 1954, he toured a successful exhibition throughout the United States.
During the nineteenth century, Maria Röhl was the official portrait artist of the royal court. Röhl was born in Stockholm in 1801. She died in 1875. During her career, she produced an expansive collection of around 1,800 portraits, which are today housed and exhibited at the national museum in Stockholm. In addition to painting members of the royal household, Röhl painted the portraits of many other nineteenth-century celebrities, including the opera singer Julie Berwald, the poet Esaias Tegnér, and the Lieutenant Colonel of the Swedish Army, Daniel Nordlander.
The Arts and Crafts movement played a crucial role in Carl Larsson’s paintings of idyllic family life. Born in the city of Falun in 1853, Larsson primarily used oils and watercolors. If you visit the Swedish National Museum of Fine Arts, you will see what is widely considered to be his finest work: Midvinterblot, which means “Midwinter Sacrifice.” The mural is miles away from Larsson’s usual paintings of families and countryside. It is a powerful piece that features figures from Nordic mythology. Larsson is one of Sweden’s most celebrated artists, and when you look at his vast body of work, it is easy to understand why.
Hilma af Klint
Despite Kandinsky generally being regarded as the pioneer of abstract painting, the world’s first abstract painter was actually Hilma af Klint. The Swedish woman produced the very first abstract art in the west. Hilma af Klint, who was born in 1862 and died in 1944, was also a mystic who often held seances with a group known as The Five. Her mysticism influenced her paintings, which were visual representations of complex spiritual concepts. The reason Hilma af Klint has so often been overlooked by the art world is due to the fact that her larger-than-life paintings were never exhibited publicly until decades after her death. But she is gradually becoming more well-known and regarded as one of the all-time greats.
Anders Zorn was one of the most famous Swedish artists and he gained notable international success. Born in Mora in 1860, Zorn worked as a painter, sculptor, printmaker, and etcher. The Swede was a true master of different materials but his most celebrated works are his portraits in oils or watercolors. Zorn gained an impressive reputation during his lifetime, which led to many commissions for such famous figures as King Oscar II of Sweden and the American presidents Theodore Roosevelt, William H. Taft, and Grover Cleveland. Zorn died in 1920. Today, you can see a large collection of his works under one roof at Sweden’s National Museum of Fine Arts.