(Johan) August Strindberg (b Stockholm, 22 Jan 1849; d Stockholm, 14 May 1912). Swedish painter, sculptor and playwright. He had no art training, but learnt from artist fri…ends after abandoning his studies at the University of Uppsala in 1872. The chief influence on him was Per Ekstr?m, whose broken colour-spot technique he attempted to copy during his initial painting period in 1872-4 in Stockholm and on the skerry-islands Kymmend? and Sandhamn. Very little of Strindberg's early painting survives, but he had already found his special motifs: the sea, usually with turbulent waves; solitary trees or flowers on bare cliffs or sandy beaches in the outermost fringe of the skerries. After he stopped painting in 1874 he became Sweden's leading art critic, as well as the ideological leader of the radical Swedish artists' movement, which in 1884 formed the Konstn?rsf?rbund (the Artists' Association) in protest against the Academy of Art. Prominent among the members were the painters Carl Olof Larsson, Karl Nordstr?m and Richard Bergh. During this period, however, he produced sketches in words and pictures as illustrations to his own writings, which Carl Larsson was commissioned to do thereafter. From 1883 he stayed abroad, primarily in France and Switzerland, and belonged during a couple of long periods to the Scandinavian artists' colony in Grez-sur-Loing, near Fontainebleau in France. In 1886 in Switzerland he started photography and took a series of self-portraits that were intended for publication (see Gundlach and others, pp. 251-7). After the failure of his first marriage and a couple of years spent in Denmark, he returned in 1889 to Stockholm, where in addition to his writing he began in 1890 to experiment with drawing and sculpture, for example The Weeping Boy (plaster, h. 200 mm, 1891; Stockholm, Strindbergsmus.). .
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