The vast majority of KPM plaques are copies of well-known old masters and contemporary oil paintings. The following is a list of artists whose works were most often used as inspiration by porcelain painters of late 19th and early 20th century.
Bos, Georges van den (Belgian, 1835-1911) - Not much known about this artist. See Bonheur Maternel
Bouguereau, William-Adolphe (French, 1825-1905) - one of the best academic painter, exhibited in the annual Paris Salons for more than 50 years. His paintings of religious, mythological, and genre subjects were carefully composed and painstakingly finished. Thus he opposed the admission of works by the impressionists to the Salon, because he believed that their paintings were no more than unfinished sketches. After a period of neglect following his death, Bouguereau's paintings were returned to view as part of a renewed interest in and reappraisal of academic painting and of Ecole des Beaux-Arts works in general. His painting were widely reproduced on porcelain plaques. See Contemplation, Psyche and Cupid, Cupid & Psyche as Children, Virgin of Consolation, Heart's Awakening, Wasp's Nest, Cupid with a Butterfly
Cabanel, Alexandre (French, 1823-1889) - The winner of the Prix de Rome in 1845, he ranked with Bouguereau as one of the most successful and influential academic painters of the period and one of the sternest opponents of the Impressionists. The Birth of Venus (Musee d'Orsay, Paris) is his best-known work and typical of the slick and titillating (but supposedly chaste) nudes at which he excelled. It was the hit of the official Salon of 1863, the year of the Salon des Refuses, and was bought by the emperor Napoleon III, who gave Cabanel several prestigious commissions. Cot, Pierre Auguste (French, 1837 - 1883) - a painter of the Academic Classicism school. Born in Bédarieux, and initially studied at l'Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Toulouse before going to Paris. Studied under Leon Cogniet, Alexandre Cabanel and Bouguereau. From the 1870s, his popularity grew quickly. In 1874 he was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honour. He created several works of lasting popularity, including Spring featuring two young lovers sitting upon a swing, and Storm. Both these paintings are on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC. Gerrit Dou (Dutch, 1613-1675) - Dutch painter of small, meticulously detailed portraits, paintings of hermits, and scenes of domestic life. He received part of his artistic training in Rembrandt's studio and is very highly regarded for his color and light effects. See Violin player
Elsley, Arthur (British, 1860-1952) - One of the most popular English artists who depicted childhood scenes in the late Victorian and Edwardian periods. His works were very popular during his lifetime, and many of his paintings were reproduced as prints, and were often used in calendars, advertisements, books and magazines. Some of them were also reproduced on plaques by porcelain painters. See Home Team
Hofmann, Heinrich (German, 1824-1902) - German historical painter. Born in Darmstadt, 1824. After studying in Dusseldorf and at the Antwerp Academy, resided in Italy, 1854-58. Hofmann finally settled in Dresden in 1862, where he became professor of art in the academy. While he chose his subjects from the whole field of literature and mythology, Hofmann is most widely known for his idealized scenes from the life of Christ. Several of these were extensively reproduced on porcelain especially his Christ in the Temple, painted in 1882.
Jacomb-Hood, George Percy R. E. (British, 1857-1929) - Born in Surrey, an accomplished painter and etcher, lived in London but also travelled to work in Paris and India. His work included portraits and townscapes, including a number commissioned by the Indian royal family. His drawings illustrated a number of magazines as well. Member of the Society of British Artists. See Love's Awakening
Kaulbach, Wilhelm von (German, 1805-1874) - One of Germany's finest nineteenth century artists, received his first lessons in painting from his father, a goldsmith. In 1821, Kaulbach enrolled in the Academy at Dusseldorf, first studying under and then working with Cornelius. His first commissions for his work began in 1826, and in the following decades Kaulbach rose to become Germany's best known oil and fresco painters of historical and genre scenes. See Guardian Angel An equally important aspect of Kaulbach's career was his work as a designer. In fact, he is now remembered more for his illustrations of Shakespeare, Schiller and Goethe than for anything else.
Kiesel, Conrad (German, 1846-1921) - Originally trained as an architect, Conrad Kiesel then went on to be a sculptor in Germany. Following a visit to Holland, Kiesel returned to Berlin to study painting and then moved home to Duesseldorf. Under the tutelage of Wilhelm Sohn, Kiesel acquired his exquisite sense and technique for depicting fabrics and colors. In 1885 he settled in Berlin as a portraitist and genre painter while at the same time maintaining his reputation as a sculptor. He attracted paintings commissions from Emperor Wilhelm II and obtained an honorable professorship of the Berlin Academy of Arts. Throughout his life, Kiesel submitted works at the annual Great Art Exhibition in Berlin and the Glass Palace Exhibitions in Munich. In 1900 he received an honorable mention at the World Exhibition in Paris. See Clementine, Ihr Liebling, Apfelblute
Lossow, Heinrich (German, 1843-1897) - born and died in Munich. Studied at the Munich Academy. Painted genre scenes in the style of Rococo, many of them very erotic. Lossow was also curator of the art gallery Schleissheim near Munich. See Toilette
Martens, Willem Johannes (Dutch, 1838-1895) - Most famous work is Forbidden Kiss (Liefdesdroom). Not much known about this artist except that he's often confused with Willem or Willy Martens from The Hague (born in 1856) who studied in Paris under Bonnat and won an honorable mention in 1886 and in 1900 became a member of the Salon jury.
Netscher, Caspar (Dutch, 1635-1684) - The date and place of Netscher's birth is not certain, but most probably it was in Prague in 1635 or 1636. According to one report he was taken, as a child, to Arnhem, where he first began his training as a painter with Herman Coster, and then went to Deventer, to study with Gerard ter Borch. He certainly painted small genre scenes in the manner of ter Borch. At the age of twenty-one he left for Rome but got no further than Bordeaux, where he married in 1659. By 1662 he had moved to The Hague, where he spent the rest of his life. From then on he specialized in small, elegant, half-length portraits of the aristocracy. See Man Writing a Letter
Riedel, August (German, 1802-1883) - painted many atractive portraits that were reproduced on porcelain. See Judith and The Beauty of Albano
Sichel, Nathaniel (German, 1843-1907) - Specialized in Middle Eastern female portraits. See Theodore, Herodias
Thumann, Friedrich Paul (German, 1834-1908) - Born in Gross Tzchackdsorf (Germany) and died in Berlin. Considered a historical, portrait and genre painter from the German School. Thumann was also a print maker and illustrator. Began his formal education in 1853 at the Berlin Art Academy under Professor D’Hubner in Dresden. In 1863, he was invited to study with Professor Ferdinand Pauwels (1830-1904) at the Ecole d’Art in Weimar. Paul Thumann became a full professor at the Ecole d’Art in 1866. Thurman came to the US in 1893 with his painting of Psyche at Nature's Mirror of which he sold the rights to White Rock. He later returned to Berlin. In 1879, awarded the Berlin Medallion. In 1880, elected to become a member of the Berlin Academy. Many of his works were reproduced on porcelain. See Art Wins Heart, Psyche at Nature's Mirror, Three Fates
Titian (1490-1576) - Considered to have been the greatest 16th-century Venetian painter, and the shaper of the Venetian coloristic and painterly tradition. One of the key figures in the history of Western art. See Venus with a Mirror, Venus and Cupid with an Organist
Van der Werff, Adriaen (Dutch, 1659-1722) - Painter of religious and mythological scenes and portraits, active mainly in Rotterdam. He combined the precise finish of the Leiden tradition (learned from his master Eglon van der Neer) with the classical standards of the French Academy and became the most famous Dutch painter of his day, winning international success and earning an enormous fortune. Houbraken, writing in 1721, considered him the greatest of all Dutch painters and this was the general critical opinion for about another century. He is now considered an extremely accomplished, rather sentimental and repetitive minor master. His Hagar and Ishmael banished from the house of Abraham was extensively reproduced by KPM porcelain painters.