Sven Birger Sandzen

Swiss/American , 1871 - 1954

Sven Birger Sandzen was born in Bildsberg, Sweden in 1871. He graduated from the College of Skara in Sweden in 1890 and went on to study at the University of Lund. He studied art at the Stockholm Artists League School with Anders Zorn and Richard Bergh, then later in Paris with Aman- Jean.

In 1894 Sandzen moved to the United States to teach at Bethany College in Kansas. He also taught at the State Agricultural College in Logan, Utah during the summer of 1928. He was the Works Progress Administration's artist and teacher at the Broadmoor Art Academy in Colorado Springs from 1923 to 1924.

Sandzen's interest in mountain landscapes extended to the Southwestern desert and he began making frequent visits to Santa Fe and Taos as the art colony began emerging there in the early 1900s. Sandzen was equally respected for his work as a painter, illustrator, engraver and lithographer. His renderings of the Rocky Mountains in lithographs, paintings and block prints have been likened the Post-Impressionist styles of Van Gogh and Cezanne.

In 1917 he won a prize for his work at an exhibition of Kansas City artists. He was also awarded the Knight of the Swedish Royal Order of the North Star. Sandzen died in Lindsborg, Kansas in 1954.


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