Carl Larsson

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Carl Larsson is one of Sweden’s most beloved and well-known artists. He mostly represented the Arts and Crafts Movement and quickly became one of 19th century’s most influential artist. His paintings mostly comprised of subject matters which were his real life family and friends, mostly working on oils, watercolors and murals. His paintings represented a deep affinity of the normal life everyone often craved for, simple and peaceful. His paintings of his family depicted scenes just like this, deep in core family life and showing simple facets of life which had started diminishing in those times due to an increase in consumerism culture. Larsson also worked as an illustrator which brought him great fame and recognition during his career as an artist and is evident even to this day.

Carl Larsson was born in 1853 in Stockholm Sweden into very humble beginnings. His family was very poor and Larsson didn’t have the best of childhoods. This may be one of the reasons why Larson searched for and was lucky enough to finally find normalcy in his married life. Despite being exposed to extreme poverty his mother was always supportive of her son’s desires while his father remained a barely there figure. At the age of 13 a young Larsson was encouraged to apply to the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts and even there he was exposed to feelings of despair and not fitting in due to his poor background. However his love for art bore ambition in Larsson and he soon gained confidence and excelled in art school, he went on to win every important art prize during the duration of his art schooling at the academy. After art school Larsson spent many years as an illustrator for magazines and books before eventually deciding to move to Paris to try his luck there as a fulltime artist. Success was also futile in Paris but Larsson eventually ended up finding love in the form of Karin who would go on to become his life and the chance meeting turned out to be a turning point in his life. Both husband and wife went on to become a powerful painting duo and Karin is regularly featured in Larsson’s work as the central female figure holding the family together. Larsson was blessed to find two women in his life, his mother and wife, who were rare examples for him as to how strong women can be. This in turn gave Larsson strength as a painter and fuelled his creative mind.

Most of Carl Larsson’s well known works depict scenes of quaint family life set in a blissful setting. He became popular for creating the notion of the simple, happy and beautiful home set with an ideal family. It was a stark contrast to his dark and dire youth which he witnessed as a child. Some of Larsson’s paintings and illustrations set a trend for numerous Swedish couples to embark on the artistic journey themselves. Even today his magnificent illustrations are often cited when it comes to interior designing of galleries, museums to even houses. The charm and power of Larsson inventiveness is simply marvelous even to this day.

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