Dik F. Liu is a Williamsburg-based artist who has compiled a fascinating list on his Facebook profile page of what he has termed the “ Not as Famous – Lesser known relatives of well-known artists.” He has allowed us at Hyperallergic to publish a number of the gems in his collection, which includes everything from love triangles, same-sex spouses, and illegitimate children.
We apologize that we don’t have the sources for some of these images but they are simply too good not to share. If you know the source please let us know.
José Ruiz Blasco (1838–1913), aka Pablo Picasso’s father, "Aves de corral" (nd), oil on canvas. 38”x 52” (via artnet) Francisco Pacheco (1564 – 1644), aka Diego Velazquez's father-in-law and teacher, "The Last Judgment" (nd), 133" x 93", oil on canvas (via Wikipedia) Anna Elizabeth Klumpke (1856–1942), aka Rosa Bonheur’s domestic partner, Portrait of Rosa Bonheur" (1898), 46” x 39”, oil on canvas. The comments to this post tell more of the story. As Klumpke & Bonheur met through letters for 8-9 years before meeting in person and, one commenter clarifies, "Rosa didn't meet Anna in person until a year before her death... When they did meet, Rosa invited Anna to move in with her, which she did, and when Rosa died, she left everything to Anna. Before that, She lived for over forty years with her childhood friend Nathalie Micas. Nathalie died somewhere around 10 years before Rosa." (via metmuseum.org/toah) Dirck Hals (1591–1656), aka Frans Hals’ baby brother, "The Merry Company" (1626), oil on canvas. Coincidentally, older brother, Joost Hals, was also a painter. Jared French (1905-1987), aka Paul Cadmus’ domestic partner, "The Double" (nd), 23” x 31”, egg tempera on board. In the mid 1920s, Jared French was a Wall Street clerk who studied part-time at the Art Students League. It was there that Jared French met Paul Cadmus, and it was love at first sight. Later, French perused art seriously and it was he who convinced Paul Cadmus to give up on commercial art so to focus on fine art. Margaret Hoening French (1889-1973), aka Jared French’s wife, "Circus Performers and Animals" (nd), 18” x 12”, gouache on board. According to Liu, "Margaret Hoening is a lesser-known relative of another lesson-known, Jared French. Margaret Hoening was married to Jared French who was also the domestic partner of Paul Cadmus, a better-known artist. French kept two residences, one with Cadmus and the other with Hoening. The threesome summered together." (via artnet) Charles Pollock, aka Jackson's brother (1902-1988), Titled Unknown (1956). He and his brother, Jackson, moved from Wyoming to NYC to study with Thomas Hart Benton. Jackson Pollock had another older brother who was also a painter, Sanford Pollock (aka Sanford McCoy). Blanche Monet (1865-1947), aka Claude Monet’s stepdaughter and also as his daughter-in-law (but it’s inadvisable to think of her as both, due to the ick factor), "The Haystack" (nd), oil on canvas, 20” x 32”, oil on canvas. Liu adds, "As a lass, Blanche was so close to Monet that she'd schlepped Monet's easel to his motif, painting the same subject alongside him and using his palette."
Elizabeth Bouguereau (1837-1922), aka William Adolphe Bouguereau’s New Hampshirian wife, "In the Woods" (1889) on right, oil on canvas. From Liu, "The American Elizabeth Jane Gardner (depicted on the top left by William Adolphe Bouguereau) was a student of Bouguereau’s. After Bouguereau’s first wife died, Gardner and Bouguereau developed a thing for each other. They got engaged but it took them seventeen years to tie the knot. She was known as a social butterfly and also independently minded, applying for a police permit so that she can dress in menswear. She persuaded her husband to use his influence to convince the Academie Julien to begin admitting women students. As an artist, Elizabeth Bouguereau showed in the Salon more than any other woman painter in history." (via artrenewal.org) Pola Gauguin (1883-1961), aka Paul Gauguin’s son, "Liggende akt og sittende mann" (1917), 22”X27”, oil on canvas. Emile Gauguin (1899-1980), aka Paul Gauguin’s Tahitian son, "Suckling Baby" (c. 1967), 42” x 42”, oil on canvas. Emile Gauguin was the son of Paul Gauguin and a Tahitian woman named Tehura. Emile grew up and lived in Tahiti. He was a simpleton who cashed in on his father’s fame by living as a tourist attraction, posing for cameras as “the son of Gauguin.” Later, he moved to Chicago and painted in earnest. Suzanne Duchamp (1889-1963), aka Marcel Duchamp's baby sister, "Broken and Re-Established Multiplication (Multiplication brisée et rétablie)" (1918-19) (via arthistory.about.com) Giovanni Giacometti (1868 -1933), aka Alberto Giacometti's father, "Stonebreakers at Lungotevere" (1893), his later work is very post-impressionist. (via artunframed.com) Frits Mondriaan (1853-1932), aka Piet Mondrian's uncle and early teacher, "Cows on a Stream" (nd), 6" x 8.5", oil on cardboard. Piet Mondriaan, Sr. (1839-1921), aka Piet Mondrian's father, "Uw Woord is de Waarheid" (nd), 59" x 98". oil on canvas. Liu adds,"Piet Senior was a full-time religious 'activist.' Being an artist was more of a side job." The text on top reads, "Your Word Is the Truth." Jan Miense Molenaer (1610–1668), aka Judith Leyster’s husband, "Family portrait of Jan Miense Molenaer" (c. 1635), 24” x 32”, oil on panel. Even though art history remembers Leyster far more than Molenaer, when Judith Leyster married Molenaer, she gave up painting to manage Molenaer’s career and to raise their five children.
For more lesser-known artists, perhaps you should friend
Dik F. Liu on Facebook.