Feel Art Again: November Artists


As November winds to a close, let's take a look at some artists we otherwise wouldn't be able to cover. I've found fascinating facts about several artists who were born or died in November. Today's post covers the first six artists on the list; check back on Thursday for five more.

1. Giulio Romano, an Italian artist who died on Nov. 1, 1546, is the only Renaissance artist to be mentioned by William Shakespeare in a text. Act V, Scene II of The Winter's Tale refers to a statue by "that rare Italian master, Julio Romano." The only catch? Romano wasn't a sculptor.

2. The term "Fauves," or "wild beasts," was used to refer to Henri Matisse (death: Nov. 3, 1954) and his fellow artists in the early 1900s. Fauvism was so disliked by much of the public that Matisse's "Nu bleu" was burned in effigy at the Armory Show in Chicago in 1913.

3. An American artist, Alton Tobey (birth: Nov. 5, 1914), painted portraits of many notable figures, including Pope John Paul II, Robert Frost, and Albert Einstein. During Einstein's sitting, the scientist remarked that there are really no straight lines in nature, which led to Tobey's signature "curvilinear" style.

4. Norman Rockwell (death: Nov. 8, 1978) attempted to enlist in the Navy during World War I, but was found to be eight pounds underweight. He spent a night stuffing himself with bananas, liquids, and doughnuts, and managed to weigh enough to enlist the next day. He was put to use as a military artist, though, and he thus never actually saw any action during his tour of duty.

5. The French painter Paul Signac, born on Nov. 11, 1863, was a great supporter of up-and-coming artists. He was the first to buy a painting by Henri Matisse and, while president of the Société des Artistes Indépendants, he exhibited works by both Fauves and Cubists.

6. Auguste Rodin was born on Nov. 12, 1840, and died 77 years and 5 days later, on Nov. 17, 1917. The French artist began living with Rose Beuret in 1864 and fathered her child in 1866, but it was not until the last year of their lives that the two life-long companions wed.

'Feel Art Again' appears every Tuesday and Thursday.