Martin Johnson Heade American
I have found that Martin Johnson Heade's
paintings are popular with many portrait painters.
Heade was born in Lumberville, Pennsylvania.
He studied portrait painting under the Quaker
artists Edward and Thomas Hicks. He began his
professional career as a portrait artist while
still in his twenties, supporting himself while
traveling to France, Italy and England to study
and to refine his skills.
Martin Johnson Heade
as a Young Man, by Thomas Hicks, early
1840s, collection of the Mercer Museum
Bucks County Historical Society.
In the 1850's, Heade abruptly changed course. He moved to New York
City where he acquired a studio in the Tenth
Street Studio Building (see book on this building), near
landscape painters Frederic Edwin Church, John C. Kensett, and Fitz
Hugh Lane. He gave up portraiture and began to experiment with landscapes
and shore scenes. A deep reverence for nature attracted him to the
Luminist school of painting and, along with Kensett, Lane and Sanford
Gifford, Martin Heade became a key figure in this movement. These
artists experimented with colored light as it affects the atmosphere
of a painting. Luminism, in its concern with the effect of light,
is now seen as a precursor of Impressionism. Heade's shore scenes
and landscapes are rich in color, and convey a mood by color contrasts
and elongated forms, though they forsake realistic detailing.
Heade's interest in hummingbirds has been characterized
as an obsession. In 1863, he went to Brazil
to prepare the illustrations for a book that
was never published. By the 1870's, he had a
number of paintings in various combinations
of orchids and hummingbirds, all in the luminist
style. He moved to St. Augustine, Florida in
1885 painting seascapes and birds until he died,
nineteen years later, in 1904.
Search for all Martin Johnson Heade items on AMAZON.
Johnson Heade by Theodore E., Stebbins, Jr., Janet L.
Comey, Karen E. Quinn (Contributor), Jim Wright (Contributor)
Hardcover, 208 pages (October 1999) Yale Univ Press
An independent thinker and a world traveler, American artist
Martin Johnson Heade developed a singular approach to both landscape
and still life painting, creating works of great significance
and originality in both genres. This splendidly illustrated
book focuses on the themes in Heade`s work, among them seascapes,
salt marshes, tropical landscapes, hummingbirds, orchids, and
his late work in Florida.
Martin Johnson Heade in Florida by Roberta Smith Favis,
Martin Johnson Heade Hardcover: 184 pages Publisher: University
Press of Florida (September 1, 2003)
The Life and Work of Martin Johnson Heade: A Critical Analysis
and Catalogue Raisonne by Theodore E. Jr Stebbins
Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: Yale University Press; 2Rev Ed edition (January 11,
This elegantly illustrated book brings a new perspective to
Martin Johnson Heade and his works, portraying the artist as
one of the most original and productive of the nineteenth century.
The book reproduces Heade`s 620 known paintings, many newly
discovered. These include a spectacular array of landscapes,
seascapes, still lifes, tropical studies, and original compositions
pairing orchids and hummingbirds.
Martin Johnson Heade: A Survey: 1840-1900 Barbara Novak
Timothy A. Eaton Hardcover: 80 pages Publisher: Eaton Fine
Arts Inc (June 1997)
Martin Johnson Heade (1819-1904) was under-appreciated during
his lifetime, forgotten in death, and rediscovered four decades
later, yet today he is recognized as one of the most important
artists America has produced. This book surveys Heade's long
and diverse career and includes examples of his portraits, landscapes,
hummingbirds, still lifes, and flowers.
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