Back To School & Office20 Famous Artists Your Students Should Know

20 Famous Artists Your Students Should Know


Art has been created throughout the entire course of human history. As a result, narrowing down which artists to teach in your class can be a daunting task. We’ve combed through continents and art movements to bring you a list of some of the most interesting artists we think your students should know about. Art is diverse and so is our list of famous artists. Whether you are into painting, sculpting, found art, or graffiti, there is sure to be something for everyone on this list.

Artists of the New York City Art Scene in the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s

1. Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960–1988)

Source: Galerie Bruno Bischofberger – Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Beginning as a graffiti artist, Basquiat eventually found himself one of the major stars of the neo-Expressionism art movement of New York City in the 1980s. Aside from his art, he is known for being a close friend of the artist Andy Warhol.

Example of art made by Basquiat- famous artists

Source: Jessica Hope Jackson, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Jean-Michel Basquiat

2. Andy Warhol (1928–1987)

Photo of Andy Warhol

Source: Unknown (Mondadori Publishers), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Warhol’s iconic bright-colored collages of Marilyn Monroe and Campbell’s soup cans are synonymous with the pop art movement that began in the 1950s and and peaked in the 1960s. Warhol is a legend who belongs atop any list of famous artists.

Andy Warhol soup cans

Jonn Leffmann, CC BY 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Andy Warhol

Try it: Andy Warhol Teaching Resources and Lesson Plans via Kids Art Projects 101

3. Keith Haring (1958–1990)

Keith Haring painting on a wall- famous artists

Source: Rob Bogaerts (Anefo), CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Despite dying of AIDS at just 31 years old in 1990, Haring made a big impact on the art scene in the 1980s. In 1989, Haring created the Keith Haring Foundation, which used his iconic paintings to bring funding and awareness to the AIDS crisis.

Keith Haring mural on outdoor wall

Source: Keith Haring, CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Keith Haring

Try it: 10 Keith Haring Art Projects for Kids via Artsy Craftsy Mom

4. Jeff Koons (born 1955)

Jeff Koons smiling

Source: Chris Fanning, CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Koons is perhaps best known for his large, stainless-steel balloon animal sculptures, which have shiny, bright finishes. He is part of the pop art movement in New York City.

Example of Jeff Koons art- large balloon tulips- famous artists

Source: Axel Hindemith, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Jeff Koons

Try it: Jeff Koons-Inspired Paper Balloon Dog via Deep Space Sparkle

American Modernist Painters

5. Georgia O’Keeffe (1887–1986)

Portrait of Georgia O'Keefe

Source: Rufus W. Holsinger (1866–1930), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: O’Keeffe was an American modernist painter best known for her close-up paintings of large flowers as well as desert landscapes. She was married to American photographer Alfred Stieglitz until his death in 1946.

Georgia O'- famous artists

Source: Georgia O’Keeffe, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Georgia O’Keeffe

Try it: Georgia O’Keeffe Art History Lesson for Kids via Happy Family Art

6. Charles Demuth (1883–1935)

Charles Demuth portrait- famous artists

Source: Alfred Stieglitz, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Demuth’s most notable work is I Saw the Figure 5 in Gold, which was a tribute to his friend and poet William Carlos Williams. He was also close friends with Georgia O’Keeffe and her husband. His works show the influences of various art movements in the 1920s that eventually led to American modernism.

Charles Demuth painting of a ship

Source: Charles Demuth, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Charles Demuth

Artists Inspired by the Afrofuturism Movement

7. Cyrus Kabiru (born 1984)

Cyrus Kabiru

Source: Art Base Africa

Known for: A Kenyan artist, Kabiru repurposes trash and turns it into unique eyewear. Kabiru was inspired to create his found-object sculptural glasses after growing up across from a refuse dump.

Cyrus Kabiru example of art- famous artists

Source: https://www.instagram.com/ckabiru/

Learn more: Life and Works of Cyrus Kabiru

Try it: Early Childhood Art Inspired by Cyrus Kabiru’s Afrofuturist C-Stunners via DC Area Educators for Social Justice

8. Ellen Gallagher (born 1965)

Ellen Gallagher

Source: Gagosian; Philippe Vogelenzang

Known for: Gallagher’s work includes both abstract painting as well as multimedia pieces that often combine racially charged imagery with elements of formality.

Ellen Gallagher art with collaged pieces on photographs- famous artists

Source: Kolaj Magazine

Learn more: Life and Works of Ellen Gallagher

Renaissance Artists of 16th-Century Europe

9. Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528)

Albert Durer

Source: Self-Portrait by Albrecht Dürer, 1471-1528, german painter – stock photo

Known for: Dürer was a German artist of the Renaissance period who was a painter, draftsman, writer, and printmaker. He created a number of self-portraits in a variety of mediums.

Albrecht Durer painting- famous artists

Source: Met Museum

Learn more: Life and Works of Albrecht Dürer

10. Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (1475–1564)

Michelangelo

Source: Getty Images. Michelangelo Buonarroti, Wood engraving, published in 1877.

Known for: Arguably the most famous artist of all time, Michelangelo is perhaps best known for his statue David as well as his Sistine Chapel artwork. A true Renaissance man, Michelangelo was a painter, sculptor, architect, and poet.

Michelangelo's Creation of Man

Source: Getty Images, drawing of Michelangelo’s The Creation of Man from the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, Rome, Italy, from a Victorian book dated 1879 that is no longer in copyright

Try it: 10 Magnificent Michelangelo Art Projects for Kids via Artsy Craftsy Mom

11. Titian (1490–1576)

Titian

Source: Getty Images, Engraving of painter Titian from 1870 – stock illustration

Known for: Tiziano Vecellio, known in English as Titian, was the greatest painter of 16th-century Venice. Like other famous artists and painters, he painted a variety of subjects and his style changed greatly over the course of his lifetime.

Titian

Source: Getty Images. The holy family and a shepherd painting by Titian – stock photo

Learn more: Life and Works of Titian

Feminist Artists

12. Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya (born 1992)

Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya

Source: Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: A neuroscientist by trade, Phingbodhipakkiya uses her art to explore scientific concepts as well as feminism. She is the founder of Beyond Curie, a design project that celebrates women in STEM.

Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya art piece- famous artists

Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya

13. Frida Kahlo (1907–1954)

Frida Kahlo portrait

Source: Guillermo Kahlo, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Considered a feminist icon by many, Mexican artist Frida Kahlo is perhaps best known for her raw and honest self-portraits. Like many other famous artists, Kahlo married a kindred spirit in Mexican painter Diego Rivera.

Framed Frida Kahlo painting- famous artists

Source: Frida Kahlo, Self Portrait On The Borderline Between Mexico And The United States 1932, Mudec Milano, 3 Maggio 2018

Learn more: Life and Works of Frida Kahlo

Try it: How To Draw Frida Kahlo via Art Projects for Kids

14. Judy Chicago (born 1939)

Judy Chicago portrait

Source: “The Woman’s Building Archive, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Chicago, an American feminist artist, creates large-scale installation pieces that focus on the role of women in society throughout history.

The Dinner Party by Judy Chicago

Source: Photo: Donald Woodman. Work of art: Judy Chicago., CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Judy Chicago

Artists of the Cubist Movement

15. Pablo Picasso (1881–1973)

famous artists

Argentina. Revista Vea y Lea, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: One of the founders of the Cubist movement, Spanish artist Pablo Picasso created art across a number of mediums including painting, sculpting, and printmaking. Even among famous artists, his style is easily recognizable and has been taught in schools across the world.

Learn more: Life and Works of Pablo Picasso

Try it: Picasso-Inspired Cubism Art for Kids via The Pinterested Parent

16. Paul Klee (1879–1940)

Paul klee

Source: Alexander Eliasberg (1878–1924), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Klee’s works combined elements of cubism, surrealism, and expressionism. In addition to his paintings, he also created puppets for his son.

Sculpture made by Paul Klee- famous artists

Dominique Uldry, Bern, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Paul Klee

Surrealist Artists

17. Salvador Dalí (1904–1989)

Salvador Dali

Roger Higgins, World Telegram staff photographer, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Spanish artist Dalí is perhaps best known for his work The Persistence of Memory, which prominently features melting clocks. His eccentric behaviors were almost as well known as his famous paintings and sculptures.

Art by Salvador Dali- famous artists

Salvador Dalí, CC BY 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Salvador Dalí

Try it: Surrealism Art Lesson for Kids on YouTube

18. René François Ghislain Magritte (1898–1967)

Rene Magritte

Source: Getty Images. Rene Magritte portrait from Belgian money – Franc

Known for: Belgian artist René Magritte’s most iconic work, The Philosopher’s Lamp, epitomizes his style, which depicts ordinary items in an extraordinary way.

Rene Magritte art- famous artists

Source: Pilardenou999, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of René Magritte

Abstract Expressionists

19. Jackson Pollock (1912–1956)

Jackson Pollock

Source: Smithsonian Institution, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: Everyone recognizes American painter Jackson Pollock’s drip paintings even if they aren’t familiar with his name. Pollock was one of the biggest stars of the abstract expressionist movement.

Jackson Pollock's studio floor covered in paint

Source: Rhododendrites, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Jackson Pollock

Try it: Homeschool Kids Art Lesson: Jackson Pollock via Happiness Is Homemade

20. Willem de Kooning (1904–1997)

Willem de Kooning

Source: Unknown author, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Known for: De Kooning was a Dutch American painter who was part of a group of artists in the abstract expressionist movement who became known as the New York School. He was married to fellow painter Elaine Fried.

Art by Willem de Kooning- famous artists

Source: Willem de Kooning, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Learn more: Life and Works of Willem de Kooning

Did we miss your favorite famous artists? Share them in the comments below.

Also, check out 24 Famous Poets Your Students Should Know.

Plus, get all the latest teaching tips and ideas when you sign up for our free newsletters!





Source link

Educational content ⇢

More article