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Mathias J. Alten: An Evolving Legacy

Friday, April 5, 2019, 8:00 PM



The German-born American artist, Mathias Joseph Alten (1871-1938) is often referred to as the Dean of Michigan Painters. Working in a traditional representational style, Alten incorporated the aesthetics and techniques of the Impressionist Movement in paintings infused with light and punctuated with deft brushwork. Based in Grand Rapids, Alten created more than 3,800 works over a forty-plus-year career including landscapes, seascapes, portraits, florals, and still-lifes.  Alten began as a naturalist scene painter, eventually transitioning from Barbizon and Tonalist traditions to an Impressionistic style. His painting style evolved according to his audience and personal preferences. And while he avoided embracing the “modernist” style of the early Twentieth-Century, he was sympathetic to it

Grand Valley State University holds the largest public collection of Alten’s work in the world. The George and Barbara Gordon Gallery, in conjunction with GVSU’s Special Collections of Alten Family Archives,serve as vital resources for the study of the Alten’s work.  Free and open to the public.Information
gvsu.edu/artgallery Contact

Art Gallery, 616-331-2563

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1 Campus Dr.
Allendale, MI 49401

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