Artist
Franz Marc
German painter

Disclaimer

Images

We do our best to use images that are open source. If you feel we have used an image of yours inappropriately please let us know and we will fix it.

Accuracy

Our writing can be punchy but we do our level best to ensure the material is accurate. If you believe we have made a mistake, please let us know.

Visits

If you are planning to see an artwork, please keep in mind that while the art we cover is held in permanent collections, pieces are sometimes removed from display for renovation or traveling exhibitions.

Franz Marc
German painter
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

Birth Date

February 08, 1880

Death Date

March 04, 1916

ssohail's picture

Contributor

There comes a time in the lives of some artistes when they become obsessed with mystical mumbo jumbo.

They sit around and meditate endlessly about the stars, the universe, the heavens, the milk in the fridge, space and time, etc. Franz Marc went through this phase too and he never snapped out of it. He and a few others like Wassily Kandinsky and Paul Klee got together and formed Der Blaue Reiter, i.e. The Blue Rider group. Some say the Moscow city emblem of St. George riding a horse and slaughtering a dragon inspired the name, while others say it was because Kandinsky and Marc loved horsies and blue was their favorite color. The latter is true…to some extent, both Kandinsky and Marc thought blue was totally spiritual and also, v. manly. Ugh, talk about your gendered color theory!

Marc also had some paint in his blood. His father had been a landscape painter and was thrilled, no doubt, to have his son follow in his footsteps when Marc enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. Here, he schmoozed with other artist types, and ended up loving the work of Vincent can Gogh, who wasn't such a bad colorist either. Anyway, about a decade after, he started the Der Blaue Reiter journal, and he and Kandinsky were like, really into the whole idea of the cosmos and stuff. They agreed that the best way to represent this was by being entirely non-representational, and thought that colors possessed symbolic meaning. But Marc still ended up using a lot of animals in his work, because he thought they were pure and more in touch with their primitive side compared to humans. Hence, paintings like Blue Horses, Yellow Cow and Red Deer ..

But Marc’s career was about to come to a dead end. Excuse the pun, but yeah, Marc died in the Great War of 1914. It was kind of a sucky way to go as well. Marc had been doing an awesome job using his artsy talents for army related tasks. He wasn't painting portraits. Marc had a job hiding ammo and artillery from the enemy who was buzzing about in the skies. In other words, military camouflage. He used the pointillist technique in styles ranging from “Manet to Kandinsky” to paint over loads of tarpaulin that covered the artillery, so that it blended in with the landscape. But, some time in 1916, he was put on a list of people who were to withdraw from combat for safety reasons. Before he could get the notice though, a shell splinter to the head killed Marc during a battle and cut short his artistic career. Damn. Someone should've sued the post office.

 

Featured Content

Here is what Wikipedia says about Franz Marc

Franz Moritz Wilhelm Marc (February 8, 1880 – March 4, 1916) was a German painter and printmaker, one of the key figures of German Expressionism. He was a founding member of Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider), a journal whose name later became synonymous with the circle of artists collaborating in it.

Early life

Franz Marc was born in 1880 in Munich, the then capital of the Kingdom of Bavaria. His father, Wilhelm Marc, was a professional landscape painter; his mother, Sophie, was a homemaker and a devout, socially liberal Calvinist.

At the age of 17 Marc wanted to study theology. Two years later, however, he enrolled in the arts program of Munich University. He was first required to serve in the military for a year, after which, in 1900, he began studies instead at the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich, where his teachers included Gabriel von Hackl and Wilhelm von Diez. In 1903 and 1907, he spent time in France, particularly in Paris, visiting the museums in the city and copying many paintings, a traditional way for artists to study and develop technique. In Paris, Marc frequented artistic circles, meeting numerous artists and the actress Sarah Bernhardt. He discovered a strong affinity for the work of painter Vincent van Gogh. After the 1903 trip, he ceased attending the Academy of Fine Arts.

During his 20s, Marc was involved in a number of stormy relationships, including an affair lasting for many years with Annette Von Eckardt, a married antique dealer nine years his senior. He married twice, first to Marie Schnür, then to Maria Franck; both were artists.

Check out the full Wikipedia article about Franz Marc.