1893 – 1976
Theme/Style – Portraits, figurative art, landscapes, genre scenes
Media – Oils, murals, sculpture, drawings
Artistic Focus – Though he was equally skilled at landscapes, murals and genre paintings, Christian Von Schneidau justifiably is known primarily as a portraitist. Described by one critic as a painter of “extraordinary verve and vivacity – a man who seems born to brilliant technical expression,” these qualities were most fully realized in his strikingly rich and insightful depictions of women and men. At once intimate and dignified, these images go beyond their literal subjects to speak to us of their milieu – recapturing another time, another place and another way of life.
Career Highlights –
- Born into nobility in Sweden in 1893, Christian Von Schneidau was educated by private tutors and later studied at the Stockholm Academy of Fine Art.
- Upon immigrating to the United States in 1906, Von Schneidau settled in Minnesota and studied at various art institutions in the East and Midwest, including the Art Institute of Chicago. By 1915 Von Schneidau was exhibiting in Chicago, winning First Prizes at the Art Institute and the Swedish Art Club.
- Von Schneidau moved to Los Angeles in 1917, where he founded an art school, worked as a staff artist for Twentieth Century-Fox Studios, and also executed public murals.
- In 1920 he traveled to Massachusetts to study with Richard Miller, and upon return had solo exhibitions at the Los Angeles Athletic Club and Franklin Galleries in Hollywood.
- During the 1920s and 1930s Von Schneidau was a popular portraitist in Los Angeles society, and exhibited throughout the City at the California Art Club, the California Water Color Society, Painters and Sculptors of Los Angeles, Exposition Park, Kanst Gallery, Ebell Club, and the Friday Morning Club, as well as taking First Prizes at the California State Fair and the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles.
- Von Schneidau was president of Los Angeles’ Scandinavian-American Art Society from 1938 to 1946. In 1939 he exhibited at the Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
- During the 1940s Von Schneidau taught at the Businessmen’s Art Institute in Los Angeles and during the 1950s he spent two years painting in Alaska.
- In his later years Von Schneidau taught portraiture at the Bakersfield Art Association. He passed away in Orange, California, in 1976.
Bibliographic references are available upon request.