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Lovis Corinth Biography
Lovis Corinth is born in the city of Tapiau in Eastern Prussia (today Gwardejsk, Russia) on July 21, 1858. His interest in Greek and Roman mythology as well as bible stories is awakened in school in Königsberg. He attends the Art Academy in Königsberg as of 1876, studying under Otto Günther, who acquaints Corinth with the Weimar En plein air painting. He changes to the Munich Academy in 1880. Works from his Munich days are proof of his orientation to a naturalist style of the circle of artists around Wilhelm Leibl. Lovis Corinth and his father travel to Italy in 1883, a year later he stays in Antwerp for three months, where he takes drawing classes with Paul Eugène Gorge. From 1884 to 1887 Corinth studies at the Académie Julian in Paris. Afterwards he goes to Berlin where he makes the first self-portrait, presumably around 1887/88, numerous self-portraits will follow over the years. Corinth lives in Munich as a free-lance artist from 1891 to 1899, belonging to the Secession. Getting to know Max Liebermann and Walter Leistikow in the winter of 1898/99, he becomes more and more convinced that Berlin would be the right place to live in, finally settling there in 1901. Prior to that, his work "Salomé mit dem Haupt des Johannes, II. Fassung" (Salomé with the head of John, 2nd version) was shown with great success at the second exhibition of the Berlin Secession. Lovis Corinth opens a drawing school in Berlin. He marries Charlotte Berend in 1903, who was his first student, she gives birth to their son a year later. The motif of mother and child is recurrent in his woks. Corinth's style, at first dark and grave, is gradually getting lighter and gentler taking impressionist direction. His painting shows a strong stroke of brush and pastose colors. His paintings completely emerge from the color, his works getting more and more expressive over the years. Lovis Corinth goes on study trips to Belgium and the Netherlands from 1907 to 1911. He is elected chairman of the Berlin Secession in 1911, suffering a stroke the same year, leaving him partially paralyzed. Corinth travels to the Riviera, to South Tyrol and Italy during the time of reconvalescence from 1912 to 1914, recovering enough to paint again. After 1911 he turns a great deal of his attention to graphic art, making numerous etchings and also book illustrations. The Free Secession is separating from the Berlion Secession in 1914, Corinth stays with the original Secession, and is its chairman again as of 1915. He travels to Hamburg, the Baltic Sea and to Tapiau in 1916/17. A year later he is appointed professor at the Berlin Art Academy. He and his wife build a country house in Urfeld on the Walchenseein 1919, which is to become an idyllic retreat and the place where Corinth makes the "Walchensee" pictures. He once more travels to Amsterdam in June 1925, where falls severely ill with pneumonia. He dies in Zandvoort on July 17, 1925.