Famous Artists Of The 20th Century

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Discover the most famous 20th century artists including Akira Kurosawa, Andy Warhol, Barbara Hepworth, Charles M. Schulz, Willem De Kooning and many more. This list of artists born in 20th century includes people from USA, France, UK, Australia, Spain, Italy, Japan and many more countries.
Vote for Your Favourite Artists Of The 20th Century
 1 
Andy Warhol
(Artist, Director)
Andy Warhol
13
Birthdate: August 6, 1928
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: February 22, 1987

Andy Warhol was an artist and filmmaker who played a key role in the visual art movement. Thanks to his extensive body of work, he has been the subject of various films, books, and retrospective exhibitions. Described as the bellwether of the art market, some of Warhol's works are among the most expensive paintings ever sold.

Rabindranath Tagore
12
Birthdate: May 7, 1861
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Kolkata, West Bengal, India
Died: August 7, 1941

Rabindranath Tagore was an Indian polymath who contributed greatly to the fields of literature, art, and philosophy. Referred to as the Bard of Bengal, Tagore is credited with reshaping Bengali literature and music. The first non-European to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature, Tagore is also credited with composing the national anthems of India and Bangladesh.

 3 
Jean-Michel Basquiat
(American Artist Who Became Popular During the 1980s as Part of the Neo-Expressionism Movement)
Jean-Michel Basquiat
16
Birthdate: December 22, 1960
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: August 12, 1988

Jean-Michel Basquiat was an American artist whose legacy has had an influence upon fashion, film, music, and literature. He serves as an inspiration to street artists as he started off as one, painting graffiti on buildings. After his death, at the age of 27, the value of his work has increased; in 2017, one of his paintings sold for a record $110.5 million.

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 4 
Matthew Gray Gubler
(Actor, Director, Model, Painter)
Matthew Gray Gubler
21
Birthdate: March 9, 1980
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Las Vegas

American actor, Matthew Gray Gubler, is best known for playing the character of Dr Spencer Reid in the popular and acclaimed television series Criminal Minds. He has also acted in films like 500 Days of Summer, Suburban Gothic and How to Be a Serial Killer. He won a Daytime Emmy Award for his role in the television series, The Beauty Inside.

 5 
Shigeru Miyamoto
(Video Game Designer, Artist)
Shigeru Miyamoto
8
Birthdate: November 16, 1952
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sonobe
Japanese game designer Shigeru Miyamoto is the man behind games such as Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, and Donkey Kong. He has been the general manager and senior MD at Nintendo and now serves as its representative director and creative fellow. He avoids appearing on TV or giving autographs.
 6 
Zelda Fitzgerald
(Socialite & Referred to as 'The first American Flapper' by Her Husband 'F. Scott Fitzgerald')
Zelda Fitzgerald
5
Birthdate: July 24, 1900
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Montgomery, Alabama, United States
Died: March 10, 1948

Zelda Fitzgerald was a painter, socialite, and novelist. Along with her husband Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda became a prominent personality of the Jazz Age. Renowned for her high spirits and beauty, she was named the first American flapper by Scott. For her work as a novelist and painter, Fitzgerald was posthumously made an inductee to the Alabama Women's Hall of Fame.

 7 
Gustav Klimt
(Austrian Symbolist Painter and One of the Most Prominent Members of the ‘Vienna Secession’ Movement)
Gustav Klimt
5
Birthdate: July 14, 1862
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Baumgarten, Vienna, Austria
Died: February 6, 1918

Austrian symbolist painter, Gustav Klimt, was one of the most prominent members of the Vienna Secession movement. His primary subject was the female body, and he produced numerous paintings, murals, sketches, and other art objects. He was known for his deliberate painting style. He successfully avoided personal scandal despite having an active sex life.

 8 
Wassily Kandinsky
(Russian Painter, Art Theorist and a Pioneer in Abstract Art)
Wassily Kandinsky
7
Birthdate: December 16, 1866
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: December 13, 1944
Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky is considered the pioneer of abstract art. Known for notable works such as On White II and Study for Improvisation, he was a prominent artist of the Blue Rider Period and experimented with expressionism. He also earned a professorship at the University of Dorpat
 9 
Kate Capshaw
(Actress)
Kate Capshaw
7
Birthdate: November 3, 1953
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Fort Worth, Texas, United States
Kate Capshaw, best known as Willie Scott from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, has also starred in projects such as Dreamscape, Black Rain, and The Love Letter. She converted to Judaism before her marriage to director Steven Spielberg. She made major contributions to Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign.
 10 
PJ Harvey
(Singer-songwriter, Composer, Artist, Singer, Guitarist)
PJ Harvey
7
Birthdate: October 9, 1969
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bridport

Tinged with themes of female sexuality, the lyrics of PJ Harvey have redefined the place women occupy in rock music. While she was initially part of a musical trio named after herself, she later charted her own path as a solo musician. She is only artist to have earned the Mercury Prize twice.

 11 
David Hockney
(Painter)
David Hockney
6
Birthdate: July 9, 1937
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bradford

Painter, photographer, printmaker, and stage designer David Hockney is best known for his works such as Portrait of an Artist, which became the most expensive piece of art by a living artist ever auctioned, at $90 million. His works have explored themes such as homosexuality. He has synesthesia, too.

 12 
Yayoi Kusama
(Contemporary Artist)
Yayoi Kusama
7
Birthdate: March 22, 1929
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Matsumoto, Nagano, Japan
Japanese contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama is known for her variety of artforms, including sculpture, installations, paintings, and fashion. She mingles elements such as feminism, surrealism, and abstract expressionism, and expresses her struggle with mental illness through her art. She has also published books and produced an award-winning film. 
 13 
Francis Bacon
(Painter)
Francis Bacon
5
Birthdate: October 28, 1909
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: April 28, 1992

Francis Bacon was an English philosopher and statesman. He played a major role in the development of the scientific method and was an influential figure through the scientific revolution. He served as attorney general and as lord chancellor of England and was the first recipient of the queen's counsel designation. He has created Baron Verulam in 1618. 

 14 
Susan Mikula
(Photographer, Rachel Maddow’s Partner)
Susan Mikula
13
Birthdate: 1958 AD
Birthplace: New Jersey, United States
Self-taught photographer Susan Mikula is known for using old Polaroids and pinhole cameras to create her masterpieces. She was an accountant earlier and has also worked for the U.S. consulate in Mexico. The LGBT icon is in a long-term relationship with her partner, journalist and TV personality Rachel Maddow.
 15 
Margaret Keane
7
Birthdate: September 15, 1927
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Nashville, Tennessee
 16 
Kari Byron
(Television presenter, Artist)
Kari Byron
5
Birthdate: December 18, 1974
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: California
 17 
Roy Lichtenstein
(American Pop Artist Who Became a Major Figure in the New Art Movement During the 1960s)
Roy Lichtenstein
5
Birthdate: October 27, 1923
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Died: September 29, 1997
Roy Lichtenstein was an American pop artist who became a major figure in the new art movement during the 1960s alongside artists like Andy Warhol and James Rosenquist. Among his most famous works are Drowning Girl and Whaam! Roy Lichtenstein was honored with the prestigious National Medal of the Arts in 1995.
 18 
H. R. Giger
(Painter)
H. R. Giger
5
Birthdate: February 5, 1940
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chur
Died: May 12, 2014

H. R. Giger was a Swiss artist remembered for his airbrushed images of machines and humans intertwined in cold biomechanical relationships. He is also remembered for his work as part of the special effects team that worked in Ridley Scott's 1979 science fiction horror film Alien, for which the team won an Academy Award

 19 
Tom Franco
(American Artist, Actor and Founder of the ‘Firehouse Art Collective’)
Tom Franco
7
Birthdate: April 14, 1980
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Palo Alto, California, United States

Tom Franco is an American artist and actor. He is credited with founding the Firehouse Art Collective, an art gallery in Berkeley, California. The younger brother of actor and filmmaker, James Franco, Tom Franco followed in the footsteps of his brother to become an actor before exploring his skills as an artist.

 20 
Grace Slick
(Retired Singer-Songwriter - Was A Key Figure in San Francisco's Early 'Psychedelic Music' Scene in the Mid-1960s)
Grace Slick
9
Birthdate: October 30, 1939
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Highland Park, Illinois, United States

Grace Slick is a retired singer-songwriter. Slick played an important role in the psychedelic music scene that flourished in San Francisco during the mid-1960s. One of the earliest female rock stars, Slick played a key role in the development of rock music during the 1960s. She was named among the Greatest Women of Rock N Roll by VH1 in 1999.

 21 
Martin Mull
(Comedian, Actor, Painter, and Recording Artist Known for His Role in the TV Series ‘Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman’)
Martin Mull
4
Birthdate: August 18, 1943
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Actor/comedian Martin Mull soared to fame with the soap Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman and its spin-off, Fernwood 2 Night. He also delivered an Emmy-nominated performance in Veep and voiced a role in Danny Phantom. An avid painter, too, he has held various exhibitions and released a book of his paintings.
 22 
Kim Novak
(Actress Known for Her Hit Films: 'Vertigo', ‘Picnic’, ‘The Man with the Golden Arm’ and ‘Pal Joey’)
Kim Novak
8
Birthdate: February 13, 1933
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Kim Novak is best known as Madeleine Elster/Judy Barton from Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo. The two-time Golden Globe-winning actor also starred in movies such as The Mirror Crack'd and The Man with the Golden Arm, and the series Falcon Crest. She quit acting after an unpleasant experience while shooting for Liebestraum.
 23 
Ryan Adams
(Singer-songwriter who released his debut solo album, Heartbreaker, to critical acclaim)
Ryan Adams
6
Birthdate: November 5, 1974
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Jacksonville, North Carolina, United States
 24 
Egon Schiele
(Austrian Expressionist Painter, Draftsman, and Printmaker)
Egon Schiele
4
Birthdate: June 12, 1890
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Tulln, Austria
Died: October 31, 1918

Egon Schiele was an Austrian painter whose work is well-known for its raw sexuality and intensity. An early exponent of Expressionism, Schiele was one of the early-20th century's most prominent figurative painters. His life and career inspired the 1980 biographical film Excess and Punishment, in which Schiele was played by German actor Mathieu Carrière. 

 25 
Akira Toriyama
(Japanese Manga Artist)
Akira Toriyama
8
Birthdate: April 5, 1955
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture

Akira Toriyama is a Japanese character designer and manga artist. The creator of one of the most popular manga series of all time, Dragon Ball, Akira Toriyama is widely considered one of the most influential artists to have changed the history of manga; his creation Dragon Ball is often cited as a source of inspiration by several manga artists.

 26 
Alphonse Mucha
4
Birthdate: July 24, 1860
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Ivancice, Czechia
Died: July 14, 1939
 27 
Cherie Currie
(Actor, Singer, Wood carver, Musician, Songwriter, Artist, Film producer, Television actor)
Cherie Currie
5
Birthdate: November 30, 1959
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Los Angeles
 28 
Zdzisław Beksiński
4
Birthdate: February 24, 1929
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sanok, Poland
Died: February 21, 2005
 29 
Heather McCartney
(Artist, Potter)
Heather McCartney
5
Birthdate: December 31, 1962
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tucson, Arizona, United States
 30 
Yoko Ono
(Artist and Musician Who Was an Influential Practitioner of Conceptual & Performance Art)
Yoko Ono
15
Birthdate: February 18, 1933
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Yoko Ono is a Japanese multimedia artist, peace activist, and singer-songwriter. She came into prominence after marrying John Lennon of the Beatles. She is widely criticized for her unquestionable influence over John Lennon and his music. She is also often blamed for the disbandment of The Beatles. Despite all these criticisms, Yoko Ono continues to go on her merry way.

 31 
Takashi Murakami
(Contemporary Artist Who Is the Founder and President of Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd)
Takashi Murakami
5
Birthdate: February 1, 1962
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Takashi Murakami is a Japanese contemporary artist who works in both fine arts media and commercial arts media. He is known for blurring the line between “high” and “low” arts. He is the founder of the art production and artist management company Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. He has collaborated with the fashion brand Louis Vuitton as well. 

 32 
L. S. Lowry
(Artist)
L. S. Lowry
4
Birthdate: November 1, 1887
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Stretford, Lancashire, England
Died: February 23, 1976

Laurence Stephen Lowry was an English painter, known for his bleak urban industrial landscapes, peopled with human figures akin to “matchstick men”. He became interested in the subject while working at a Manchester real-estate and began depicting what he saw. Although critics are divided over his stature, they all agree on the relevance of his works as a social commentary.

 33 
Ralph Bakshi
(Director of Animated Films)
Ralph Bakshi
5
Birthdate: October 29, 1938
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Haifa
Animation filmmaker Ralph Bakshi revolutionized the domain of animation through adult-oriented projects. He started his career with Terrytoons and eventually launched his own studio. Some of his features include Fritz the Cat, the 1978 version of The Lord of the Rings, and the series Mighty Mouse: The New Adventures.
 34 
John Singer Sargent
(American Expatriate Artist and One of the Leading Portrait Painters of His Generation)
John Singer Sargent
5
Birthdate: January 12, 1856
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Florence, Italy
Died: April 14, 1925

John Singer Sargent, an artist active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, was considered the "leading portrait painter of his generation." Prolific in his output, he created more than 2,000 watercolors and around 900 oil paintings. He also made numerous sketches and charcoal drawings. He painted with remarkable technical acumen and was internationally known for his expertise.   

 35 
Max Ernst
(Primary Pioneer of the 'Dada Movement' and 'Surrealism' Known for His Work 'A Week of Kindness')
Max Ernst
4
Birthdate: April 2, 1891
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Brühl, Germany
Died: April 1, 1976

Max Ernst was a German painter, graphic artist, sculptor, and poet. A pioneer of the Dada movement, Ernst played an important role in popularizing surrealism during the early-20th century. He is also credited with inventing a couple of techniques, namely frottage and grattage. In 2005, the Max Ernst Museum was opened in his honor in Brühl, Germany.

 36 
Robert De Niro Sr.
(Abstract Expressionist Painter & Father of Robert De Niro)
Robert De Niro Sr.
5
Birthdate: May 3, 1922
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Syracuse, New York, United States
Died: May 3, 1993
Robert De Niro Sr. was an American abstract expressionist artist best known as the father of the famous actor Robert De Niro. De Niro Sr. exhibited his paintings in museums and galleries across the United States of America. He also taught at several art schools including the New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture.  
 37 
Zeena Schreck
(Visual and musical artist)
Zeena Schreck
5
Birthdate: November 19, 1963
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, United States
 38 
Françoise Gilot
(Is a French Painter, Best known for her relationship with Pablo Picasso)
Françoise Gilot
5
Birthdate: November 26, 1921
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Neuilly-sur-Seine, France

Françoise Gilot is a French painter whose professional career was overshadowed by her long and turbulent relationship with Spanish painter Pablo Picasso. After breaking up with Picasso, with whom Gilot had two children, the former deterred galleries from buying her work. He even tried blocking the release of her memoir Life With Picasso which was released in 1964.

Andrew Wyeth
5
Birthdate: July 12, 1917
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania,, United States
Died: January 16, 2009
 40 
Hajime Isayama
5
Birthdate: August 29, 1986
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Hita
 41 
Jasper Johns
(Painter, Sculptor, Costume designer)
Jasper Johns
5
Birthdate: May 15, 1930
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Augusta

Presidential Medal-winning artist Jasper Johns is best known for his contribution to the pop art movement. His paintings revolve around subjects such as flags, numbers, and letters, whereas he has also gained fame for his cast sculpture art such as Painted Bronze. He also once experimented by attaching strings to his art.

 42 
Alberto Giacometti
(Sculptor, Painter)
Alberto Giacometti
5
Birthdate: October 10, 1901
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Borgonovo, Bregaglia, Switzerland
Died: January 11, 1966

Alberto Giacometti was a Swiss painter, sculptor, printmaker, and draftsman. Widely regarded as one of the 20th century's most important sculptors, Giacometti's career and his friendship with American writer James Lord inspired the 2017 British-American drama film Final Portrait, in which Alberto Giacometti is portrayed by Australian actor Geoffrey Roy Rush.

 43 
Gloria Vanderbilt
(Artist and Fashion Designer Best Remembered for her Custody Battle)
Gloria Vanderbilt
10
Birthdate: February 20, 1924
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, United States
Died: June 17, 2019

Gloria Vanderbilt was an American fashion designer, actress, author, and socialite. As a child, she was subjected to a child custody trial, which the press named trial of the century due to its high-profile nature. As a designer, Vanderbilt is credited with developing and popularizing designer blue jeans. She also launched a line of household goods and perfumes.

 44 
Pendleton Ward
(Television producer, Animator, Screenwriter)
Pendleton Ward
5
Birthdate: July 8, 1982
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: San Antonio
 45 
Swizz Beatz
(Record producer, Entrepreneur, Painter, Rapper, Singer, Businessperson, Songwriter)
Swizz Beatz
10
Birthdate: September 13, 1978
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York City
 46 
Jimmy Cliff
(Singer, Actor, Music artist, Artist, Musician)
Jimmy Cliff
5
Birthdate: April 1, 1948
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Saint James Parish

Jimmy Cliff is best known for popularizing reggae. After beginning his music career singing at local fairs in Jamaica, he scored his first hit, Hurricane Hattie, at 14. He later sang the iconic single Hakuna Matata from The Lion King. He was also the star of the film The Harder They Come.

 47 
Cindy Sherman
(Photographer, Film director)
Cindy Sherman
5
Birthdate: January 19, 1954
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Glen Ridge
 48 
Fernando Botero
(Painter, Sculptor, Artist)
Fernando Botero
5
Birthdate: April 19, 1932
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
 49 
Robert Rauschenberg
5
Birthdate: October 22, 1925
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Port Arthur, Texas
Died: May 12, 2008
 50 
Maya Lin
(Designer)
Maya Lin
5
Birthdate: October 5, 1959
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Athens

Maya Lin is an American sculptor and designer whose competition-winning design for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial earned her national recognition when she was still an undergraduate. Her life and career inspired an Oscar-winning documentary titled Maya Lin: A Strong Clear Vision. Maya Lin has won prestigious awards, such as the National Medal of Arts and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.