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Biography: John Bauer

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Born: June 4th 1882 Jönköping, Sweden
Died: November 20th 1918, when only 36 years old by drowning in the Swedish lake Vättern when the steamer Per Brahe foundered outside Hästholmen.


Painter, Illustrator

Bio Summary

The death of his sister at the age of 13 affected him and his brothers a great deal. After a life of amazing illustration and painting, the war and his failing marriage convinced John Bauer to seek spiritual healing and rest in Stockholm. He, his wife and child were all killed when the Per Brahe ferry wrecked during transport.

Early Life/Family

Living in an apartment situated above their father’s charcuterie, he was always given to sketching and drawing. (Wikipedia)


At sixteen, he set off for Stockholm to study art, and after two years he entered the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts.

Career Outline

Bauer’s first major work was commissioned in 1904, when he was asked to illustrate a book on Lappland, not until 1907 would he become known for his illustrations of Bland tomtar och troll, the yearly fairy tale book, in which his most highly acclaimed works would be published in the 1912-1915 editions.
Bauer also produced a fresco, Den helige Martin (The Holy Martin), which can be seen in the Odd Fellows lodge in Nyköping.
Bauer’s themes can be found in later works by the illustrators Arthur Rackham, Kay Nielsen and Brian Froud. (Wikipedia)

Comments On Style

Dark and fantasy laced.


Albert Engström and Carl Larsson


Bauer suffered from depression and self-doubts. Too often that leads to genius.





Related Links John Bauer Museum? Art Passions? Project Runeburg John Bauer Pictures? Bud Plant Illustrated Bland tomtar och troll on Wikipedia

Bibliographic References Artist John Bauer And His World, Helen Agrenius (curator, Jönköping museum), 1996.?John Bauer Sagotecknaren, Harald Schiller, 1935 (Swedish).

Contributors To This Listing

Henrik Jäfvert
Brother Rabbit of

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