I don’t know about you, but little facts and trivia about artists make them seem more human to me.  Here are some of the more interesting things I have found.

DaVinci became a vegetarian for moral reasons. He even bought caged birds at outdoor markets and set them free.

Caravaggio murdered a man, fled Rome and eventually ended up in Malta, where he was knighted.

DAVID AND GOLIATH by Caravaggio.  The head of Goliath is a self portrait.

DAVID AND GOLIATH by Caravaggio. The head of Goliath is a self portrait.

The Pieta is the only work Michelangelo ever signed.  While delivering it, he overheard someone say he couldn’t have done that – he was too young.  He went back that night and signed it.  He was 23.

The Pieta

The Pieta

Rembrandt filed for bankrupcy.

Picasso had his first artshow at age 13 – showing paintings in the back of an umbrella store.  In his 90th year, he produced 200 paintings.

Duchamp deliberately accumulated dust to use in his artwork. He also perffected a system of winning at roulette and was on the French team at the International Chess Olympiads.  He eventually married Matisse’s ex-wife.

Matisse’s painting LeBateau hung upside down for 46 days at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

La Bateau by Matisee - hung correctly.

La Bateau by Matisee – hung correctly.

Paul Gaugin worked on the Panama Canal.

Rodin died of frostbite.

George Braque was the first living artist to be exhibited at The Louvre.

There is a silhouette or a self portrait of Dali in all his paintings.

It is said Da Vinci invented high heels.

Anything you want to add?


  1. Deborah Weber

    Oh what fun facts Vickie. And I did not know a single one of them! Personally I think I must be a distant relative of Duchamp – that must explain the proliferation of dust around here. 😉

  2. Sue

    This was a fun read! And I don’t think I knew any of these- what a terrible artist I am, oh my. I even went to the Dali museum in Spain and didn’t realize there was a self portrait in each of his paintings. I might need to go back and look at the book I got.

  3. vickiemartin Post author

    Funny Deborah – i read where Duchamp let it collect up to 2 inches! Sue – I didn’t know that either, but I read it in two different places. He also had a brother that die before he was born and he was named Salvador too – and Dali’ thought he was his reincarnated brother. I find alot of this crazy information in children’s books!

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