Anders Zorn


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Anders Leonard Zorn (18 February 1860 – 22 August 1920) was a Swedish painter. He attained international success as a painter, sculptor, and etching artist. Among Zorn's portrait subjects include King Oscar II of Sweden and three American Presidents: Grover Cleveland, William H. Taft, and Theodore Roosevelt. At the end of his life, he established the Swedish literary Bellman Prize in 1920.

Zorn was born and raised on his grandparents' farm in Yvraden, a hamlet near the village of Utmeland in the parish of Mora, Dalarna. He studied until the age of twelve in the school at Mora Strand before progressing in the autumn of 1872 to a secondary grammar school in Enköping.

From 1875 to 1880, Zorn studied at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts in Stockholm, where he amazed his teachers with his talent. Members of the Stockholm Society approached him with commissions. In early 1881, Zorn met Emma Lamm, whose background was quite different from his. Emma Lamm was from a wealthy Jewish merchant family. She was interested in art and culture and, after a long engagement, they were married in a civil ceremony in October 1885.

Zorn traveled extensively, to London, Paris, the Balkans, Spain, Italy, and the United States; he became an international success and one of the most highly regarded painters of his era. It was primarily his skill as a portrait painter that gained Zorn international acclaim, based principally upon his incisive ability to depict the individual character of his model.