Famous 18th Century Artists & Painters

Find out more about the greatest 18th Century Painters, including J. M. W. Turner, Francisco Goya, Samuel Morse, Hokusai and Jacques-Louis David.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 William Blake

William Blake
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Famous As: Poet and Visual Artist of the Romantic Age
Birthdate: November 28, 1757
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Soho, London, England
Died: August 12, 1827
William Blake, author of The Songs of Innocence and of Experience, was a prominent figure of the early phase of the Romantic Age, known as the pre-Romantic era. Known for his visual artistry and poetry, he was also a staunch abolitionist and a forerunner of the "free love" movement.

 2 Francisco Goya

Francisco Goya
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Famous As: Painters
Birthdate: March 30, 1746
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Fuendetodos
Died: April 16, 1828
One of the most successful and distinguished artists of his time, Spanish painter Francisco Goya is regarded as both the first of the moderns and last of the Old Masters. His career was initially marked by Rococo style tapestry cartoons and Spanish aristocracy and royalty but later his works became pessimistic.

 3 J. M. W. Turner

J. M. W. Turner
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Famous As: Romantic painter
Birthdate: April 23, 1775
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: December 19, 1851

J. M. W. Turner was an English printmaker, painter, and watercolorist best remembered for his imaginative landscapes and expressive colorizations. Intensely reclusive and eccentric throughout his life, Turner lived in poor health and squalor for the last few years of his life. He was portrayed by actor Timothy Spall in the 2014 biographical film, Mr. Turner.

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 4 Jacques-Louis David

Jacques-Louis David
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: August 30, 1748
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: December 29, 1825

Jacques-Louis David was a French painter. Widely regarded as the greatest painter of the Neoclassical era, David's works had a strong influence in France in the early-19th century. His works are often linked to the birth of Romanticism. Many of his pupils, such as Antoine-Jean Gros and Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, went on to become successful and popular painters.

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 5 John Constable

John Constable
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Famous As: Romantic Painter
Birthdate: June 11, 1776
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: East Bergholt
Died: March 31, 1837

 6 William Hogarth

William Hogarth
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: November 10, 1697
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England
Died: October 26, 1764
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 7 Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: August 29, 1780
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Montauban, France
Died: January 14, 1867
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 8 Katsushika Hokusai

Katsushika Hokusai
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Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: October 31, 1760
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Edo, Tokyo, Japan
Died: May 10, 1849

Katsushika Hokusai was a Japanese printmaker, ukiyo-e painter, and artist of the Edo period. He is best known as the creator of the monumental Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji, a series of landscape prints, which includes the iconic print, The Great Wave off Kanagawa. He is credited with transforming the ukiyo-e art form to include a much broader style of art.

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 9 Antonio Canova

Antonio Canova
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Famous As: Sculptor
Birthdate: November 1, 1757
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Possagno, Italy
Died: October 13, 1822

Antonio Canova was an Italian Neoclassical sculptor widely regarded as the greatest of the Neoclassical artists. He was famous for his marble sculptures. His work was inspired by the Baroque and the classical revival. His most notable works include Psyche Revived by Cupid's Kiss and Perseus Triumphant. Unlike many of his contemporaries, he refused to take in pupils. 

 10 William Turner of Oxford

William Turner of Oxford
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Famous As: Painter who specialised in watercolour landscapes
Birthdate: November 29, 1789
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Oxfordshire, England, United Kingdom
Died: August 7, 1862

British landscape painter William Turner of Oxford is often mistaken for the famous painter J. M. W. Turner, who was also from England. Turner was a lifelong member of the Watercolor Society, founded by his mentor John Varley. Oxford from Hinksey Hill remains one of his best-known works.

 11 John James Audubon

John James Audubon
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Famous As: Naturalist, Painter, Ornithologist
Birthdate: April 26, 1785
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Les Cayes
Died: January 27, 1851

 12 Marie Tussaud

Marie Tussaud
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Famous As: Visual Artist, Wax Sculptor
Birthdate: December 7, 1761
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Strasbourg, France
Died: April 16, 1850

Marie Tussaud was a French artist and sculptor best remembered for her wax sculptures. She founded Madame Tussauds, a wax museum, in London in 1835. The museum is a major tourist attraction today. As a young girl, she learned wax modeling from doctor cum wax modeler Philippe Curtius. In the ensuing years, she became a prominent sculptor.

 13 Grandma Moses

Grandma Moses
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Famous As: Painter, Illustrator
Birthdate: September 7, 1860
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York
Died: December 13, 1961

Anna Mary Robertson, better known as Grandma Moses, revolutionized American folk art with her iconic depictions of American rural life. After spending 15 years of her life working as a housekeeper, she deviated toward embroidery. A bout of arthritis made her switch to painting in her late 70s.

 14 Caspar David Friedrich

Caspar David Friedrich
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Famous As: Romantic landscape painter
Birthdate: September 5, 1774
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Greifswald, Germany
Died: May 7, 1840

Caspar David Friedrich was a German painter best remembered for painting mid-period allegorical landscapes. Widely regarded as the most important German painter of his era, Friedrich is celebrated as an important figure of the German Romantic movement. His works have influenced several painters, including Johan Christian Dahl, Arnold Böcklin, and Christiane Pooley.

 15 Thomas Gainsborough

Thomas Gainsborough
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Famous As: Landscape painter
Birthdate: May 14, 1727
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Sudbury, England
Died: August 2, 1788

 16 E. T. A. Hoffmann

E. T. A. Hoffmann
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Famous As: Author
Birthdate: January 24, 1776
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Königsberg, Germany
Died: June 25, 1822

E. T. A. Hoffmann was a German author, jurist, artist, composer, and music critic. His stories served as an inspiration and laid the foundation for The Tales of Hoffmann by Jacques Offenbach. The Nutcracker by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is also based on Hoffmann's The Nutcracker and the Mouse King. Hoffmann is among the most influential authors of the Romantic Movement.

 17 John Trumbull

John Trumbull
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Famous As: War veterans
Birthdate: June 6, 1756
Sun Sign: Gemini
Died: November 10, 1843

 18 Bertel Thorvaldsen

Bertel Thorvaldsen
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Famous As: Former Sculptor
Birthdate: November 19, 1770
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Copenhagen, Denmark
Died: March 24, 1844

Bertel Thorvaldsen was a Danish sculptor and medallist. He was internationally famous and spent most of his life in Italy. He received his training at the Royal Danish Academy of Art and initially worked with his father, a woodcarver. He went on to become a famous sculptor and worked in a heroic neo-classicist style. He received many awards. 

 19 Hiroshige

Hiroshige
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Famous As: painter
Birthdate: 1797 AD
Birthplace: Edo
Died: October 12, 1858

Best known for his landscape series like The Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō and One Hundred Famous Views of Edo, Hiroshige was a well-known ukiyo-e master, whose death marked the decline of this genre of art.  His works, which were generally characterized by subtle use of graded colors and multiple impressions, were source of inspiration to many 19-century European painters.

 20 Joseph Ducreux

Joseph Ducreux
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Famous As: Former Painter who was a successful portraitist at the court of Louis XVI of France
Birthdate: June 26, 1735
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nancy, France
Died: July 24, 1802

 21 Elisabeth Vigee Le Brun

Elisabeth Vigee Le Brun
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: April 16, 1755
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: March 30, 1842

 22 Jean-Honore Fragonard

Jean-Honore Fragonard
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: April 5, 1732
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Grasse, France
Died: August 22, 1806

 23 Gilbert Stuart

Gilbert Stuart
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Famous As: Portrait painter, Painter
Birthdate: December 3, 1755
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: North Kingstown
Died: July 9, 1828

 24 Giovanni Battista Piranesi

Giovanni Battista Piranesi
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Famous As: Archaeologist
Birthdate: October 4, 1720
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Venice, Italy
Died: November 9, 1778

Italian architect, artist, and archaeologist Giovanni Battista Piranesi is best known for his 16-print series name The Prisons. His remarkable etchings of the famous landmarks of Rome exhibited his unique etching technique, which involved contrasts of light and shade. He made about 2,000 plates throughout his life.

 25 Canaletto

Canaletto
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Famous As: Painter, Landscape Artist
Birthdate: October 18, 1697
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Venice, Italy
Died: April 19, 1768

Canaletto was an Italian painter who achieved popularity in England as his works were largely appreciated by King George III. Regarded as one of the most prominent representatives of the 18th-century Venetian school, Canaletto was also renowned for his skills as a printmaker.

 26 Henry Fuseli

Henry Fuseli
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Famous As: Former painter known for Painting, draughtsmanship
Birthdate: February 7, 1741
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Zürich, Switzerland
Died: April 17, 1825

Swiss artist Henry Fuseli is remembered for the drama and sensuality showcased in his paintings. Though born to a landscape and portrait painter, he was initially taught theology. After leaving the country due to political risks, he made it to Britain and Italy. He later contributed to the Boydell Shakespeare Gallery.

 27 Jean-Antoine Watteau

Jean-Antoine Watteau
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Famous As: Former Painter whose notable works include Embarkation for Cythera, L'Enseigne de Gersaint
Birthdate: October 10, 1684
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Valenciennes, France
Died: July 18, 1721

 28 François Boucher

François Boucher
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: September 29, 1703
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: May 30, 1770

 29 John Singleton Copley

John Singleton Copley
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Famous As: Anglo-American painter
Birthdate: 1738 AD
Birthplace: Boston, United States
Died: September 9, 1815

 30 Tarrare

Tarrare
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Famous As: Showman
Birthdate: 1772 AD
Birthplace: Lyon, France
Died: 1798 AD

 31 Angelica Kauffman

Angelica Kauffman
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: October 30, 1741
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Chur, Switzerland
Died: November 5, 1807

One of the two women founder members of London’s Royal Academy, Angelica Kauffman was born to a painter father in Switzerland and was quite a prodigy, who mastered several languages and the arts of music and painting quite quickly. The history painter is best remembered for her landscapes and portraits.

 32 Benjamin West

Benjamin West
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Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: October 10, 1738
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Springfield, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: March 11, 1820

 33 Giovanni Battista Tiepolo

Giovanni Battista Tiepolo
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Famous As: Painter, Printmaker
Birthdate: March 5, 1696
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Venice, Italy
Died: March 27, 1770

Eighteenth-century Italian painter Giovanni Battista Tiepolo was a significant figure of the Rococo movement. Son of a shipping merchant, Tiepolo gained fame with his iconic creations such as The Sacrifice of Isaac. He was determined he wouldn’t leave Venice and often sent his paintings abroad instead of traveling to paint.

 34 George Catlin

George Catlin
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: July 26, 1796
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: December 23, 1872

 35 Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin

Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: November 2, 1699
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: December 6, 1779

 36 Utagawa Kuniyoshi

Utagawa Kuniyoshi
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Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: January 1, 1798
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
Died: April 14, 1861

Nineteenth-century Japanese painter and printmaker Utagawa Kuniyoshi was one of the major figures behind the ukiyo-e style of woodwork. Born to a silk-dyer, he had started as a print designer. While he initially specialized in warrior prints, he later also worked on landscapes, such as the series Famous Sights of Edo.

 37 John Martin

John Martin
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Famous As: engraver, painter
Birthdate: July 19, 1789
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Haydon Bridge
Died: February 17, 1854

 38 Joseph Wright of Derby

Joseph Wright of Derby
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Famous As: Painter, Artist
Birthdate: September 3, 1734
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Derby
Died: August 29, 1797

 39 Joshua Reynolds

Joshua Reynolds
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: July 16, 1723
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Plympton, England
Died: February 23, 1792

 40 William Etty

William Etty
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: March 10, 1787
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: York
Died: November 13, 1849

 41 Charles Willson Peale

Charles Willson Peale
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: April 15, 1741
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chester
Died: February 22, 1827

 42 Thomas Lawrence

Thomas Lawrence
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: April 13, 1769
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bristol, England
Died: January 7, 1830

 43 Utamaro

Utamaro
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Famous As: painter
Birthdate: 1753 AD
Birthplace: Edo
Died: 1806 AD

One of the most renowned ukiyo-e woodblock artists of Japan, Utamaro is remembered mostly for his portraits of women, such as The Seven Beauties of the Gay Quarters. However, after painting Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s wives and mistresses, he was punished for insulting the military leader, leading to the end of his career.

 44 George Cruikshank

George Cruikshank
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Famous As: Caricaturist
Birthdate: September 27, 1792
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: London, England
Died: February 1, 1878

 45 Godfrey Kneller

Godfrey Kneller
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: August 8, 1646
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Free City of Lübeck
Died: October 19, 1723

 46 Hyacinthe Rigaud

Hyacinthe Rigaud
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Famous As: Former Catalan-French baroque painter most famous for his portraits of Louis XIV and other members of the French nobility
Birthdate: July 18, 1659
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Perpignan, France
Died: December 29, 1743

 47 Thomas Rowlandson

Thomas Rowlandson
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Famous As: Artist & Caricaturist of the Georgian Era
Birthdate: July 13, 1757
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: London, England
Died: April 21, 1827

 48 Benjamin Haydon

Benjamin Haydon
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: January 26, 1786
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Plymouth, England
Died: June 22, 1846

 49 George Romney

George Romney
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Famous As: painter
Birthdate: December 26, 1734
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Lancashire
Died: November 15, 1802

 50 Antoine-Jean Gros

Antoine-Jean Gros
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Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: March 16, 1771
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: June 25, 1835