Famous American Artists

America, the land of opportunities, has been the mecca of world power. Its nationals have made the country rank in the top spot in all the fields, be it science and technology or discovery and invention, leaders and revolutionaries or military and services, journalism and philosophy or activists and academicians. And in the field of art too, America ranks amongst the world leaders. Painting, sculpting, illustrating, photography, ceramics, assemblage painting, pottery - Americans have made their worth count in every form of art. Decade after decade, the country has given the world some of the world-class artists who have redefined the field of art through their exemplary work and talent. Historically, American artists have succeeded in installing a unique style or character into their work, thus changing the panorama of the world of art completely. The overwhelming beauty of their canvases has left a lasting imprint on the minds of millions of people around the globe. What’s more, their exquisite art has deeply influenced future generations of artists who have equivalently produced some of the world-class works. With this section, find out in details about the life and works of famous American artists. The magnificence and splendour of their works is sure to leave you spellbound!

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 Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol
12
Famous As: Artist, Director
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.

 2 Jean-Michel Basquiat

Jean-Michel Basquiat
14
Famous As: Artist
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.

 3 Matthew Gray Gubler

Matthew Gray Gubler
19
Famous As: Actor, Director, Model, Painter
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.

 4 Jack Kirby

Jack Kirby
5
Famous As: Comic Book Artist
Birthdate: August 28, 1917
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: February 6, 1994
Jacob Kurtzberg, or Jack Kirby, initially published comics under various other pseudonyms, such as "Jack Curtiss" and "Curt Davis." He worked with Marvel, where he co-created characters such as The Fantastic Four and the X-Men, along with Stan Lee. He then joined DC, where he created the Fourth World Saga
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 5 Anthony Quinn

Anthony Quinn
6
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: April 21, 1915
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Chihuahua, Mexico
Died: June 3, 2001
Mexican-American actor Anthony Quinn is best remembered for his Academy Award-winning roles in Viva Zapata! and Lust for Life. He also delivered stellar performances in the films Zorba the Greek, Wild Is the Wind, and The Guns of Navarone. He had exhibited his artwork and also written two memoirs.

 6 Grace Slick

Grace Slick
7
Famous As: Artist, Musician
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.

 7 Fred Gwynne

Fred Gwynne
6
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: June 30, 1926
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA
Died: July 2, 1993

Best known for his towering height, Fred Gwynne was the perfect choice for the role of Herman Munster in The Munsters. The actor and singer was a Harvard alumnus. He excelled in swimming and had also served the U.S. Navy. He later also wrote and illustrated popular children’s books.

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 8 Ryan Adams

Ryan Adams
5
Famous As: Singer-songwriter who released his debut solo album, Heartbreaker, to critical acclaim
Birthdate: November 5, 1974
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Jacksonville, North Carolina, United States

 9 Kate Capshaw

Kate Capshaw
6
Famous As: Actress
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 Norman Rockwell

Norman Rockwell
5
Famous As: Painter & Illustrator
Birthdate: February 3, 1894
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: November 8, 1978

Painter and illustrator Norman Rockwell became famous for the cover illustrations of everyday life he created for The Saturday Evening Post. He was associated with the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) for over six decades and produced covers for their publications and calendars. A prolific artist, he made more than 4,000 original works in his lifetime.

 11 Lance Henriksen

Lance Henriksen
5
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: May 5, 1940
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, United States
Lance Henriksen is best known as Bishop Weyland from the Aliens franchise and as Ed Harley from the horror film Pumpkinhead and its TV movie versions. He has also voiced video-game characters such as Steven Hackett in the Mass Effect series. He is a clay and mural artist, too.

 12 Mark Rothko

Mark Rothko
6
Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: September 25, 1903
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Latvia
Died: February 25, 1970

Considered part of the New York school of painters of the 1940s, Mark Rothko was best known for his signature color field paintings, consisting of vertically set rectangular patches of color. A significant figure of the Abstract Expressionist movement, he also experimented with murals and mythological themes.

 13 Margaret Keane

Margaret Keane
6
Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: September 15, 1927
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Nashville, Tennessee

 14 Leslie Stefanson

Leslie Stefanson
7
Famous As: Actress, Model, Artist, Sculptor
Birthdate: May 10, 1971
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fargo, Cass County, North Dakota

Leslie Stefanson is an American model, artist, and actress. She achieved popularity after playing important roles in popular films, such as The General's Daughter. A multi-talented personality, Leslie Stefanson also makes terracotta and bronze sculptures in New York City and Los Angeles.

 15 Kari Byron

Kari Byron
5
Famous As: Television presenter, Artist
Birthdate: December 18, 1974
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: California

 16 Susan Mikula

Susan Mikula
13
Famous As: Photographer, Rachel Maddow’s Partner
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.

 17 Roy Lichtenstein

Roy Lichtenstein
5
Famous As: Painter, Sculptor
Birthdate: October 27, 1923
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Died: September 29, 1997

 18 Tom Franco

Tom Franco
7
Famous As: Actor
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.

 19 Kim Novak

Kim Novak
8
Famous As: Actress
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.

 20 Daniel Stern

Daniel Stern
7
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: August 28, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bethesda, Maryland, United States U.S.

American actor, artist, director, and screenwriter Daniel Stern is best-recognised for playing the tall and dim-witted thief Marv Murchins in first two films of the Home Alone franchise. He is also noted for his role in the film City Slickers and its sequel; voice-role in the TV series Dilbert; and for directing the sports-comedy film Rookie of the Year.

 21 Samuel Morse

Samuel Morse
5
Famous As: Inventor of Morse Code, Painter
Birthdate: April 27, 1791
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Charlestown, Massachusetts, United States
Died: April 2, 1872

 22 Heather McCartney

Heather McCartney
5
Famous As: Artist, Potter
Birthdate: December 31, 1962
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tucson, Arizona, United States

 23 Cherie Currie

Cherie Currie
5
Famous As: Actor, Singer, Wood carver, Musician, Songwriter, Artist, Film producer, Television actor
Birthdate: November 30, 1959
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Los Angeles

 24 Gloria Vanderbilt

Gloria Vanderbilt
10
Famous As: Artist and Fashion Designer Best Remembered for her Custody Battle
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.

 25 John Singer Sargent

John Singer Sargent
5
Famous As: Artist
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.   

 26 Robert De Niro Sr.

Robert De Niro Sr.
5
Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: May 3, 1922
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Syracuse, New York, United States
Died: May 3, 1993

 27 Zeena Schreck

Zeena Schreck
5
Famous As: Visual and musical artist
Birthdate: November 19, 1963
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, United States

 28 Swizz Beatz

Swizz Beatz
10
Famous As: Record producer, Entrepreneur, Painter, Rapper, Singer, Businessperson, Songwriter
Birthdate: September 13, 1978
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York City

 29 Andrew Wyeth

Andrew Wyeth
5
Birthdate: July 12, 1917
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania,, United States
Died: January 16, 2009

 30 Jasper Johns

Jasper Johns
5
Famous As: Painter, Sculptor, Costume designer
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.

 31 Mary Cassatt

Mary Cassatt
5
Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: May 22, 1844
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Allegheny
Died: June 14, 1926

 32 Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman
5
Famous As: Photographer, Film director
Birthdate: January 19, 1954
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Glen Ridge

 33 Pendleton Ward

Pendleton Ward
5
Famous As: Television producer, Animator, Screenwriter
Birthdate: July 8, 1982
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: San Antonio

 34 Maya Lin

Maya Lin
5
Famous As: Designer
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.

 35 Robert Rauschenberg

Robert Rauschenberg
5
Famous As: painter
Birthdate: October 22, 1925
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Port Arthur, Texas
Died: May 12, 2008

 36 Chuck Close

Chuck Close
5
Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: July 5, 1940
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Monroe, Washington, U.S.
Died: August 19, 2021

 37 Alexander Calder

Alexander Calder
5
Famous As: Sculptor, Painter
Birthdate: July 22, 1898
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Lawnton
Died: November 11, 1976

Alexander Calder was an American sculptor best remembered for his innovative kinetic sculptures designed to use either motor, air currents, or other forces of nature. A multi-talented personality, Calder was also known for his paintings, miniatures, prints, jewelry design, theater set design, political posters, and tapestries and rugs. In 1977, he was honored with the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 38 Bobbi Brown

Bobbi Brown
5
Famous As: Make-up artist, Businessperson
Birthdate: April 14, 1957
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chicago

 39 Rick Derringer

Rick Derringer
5
Famous As: Singer, Artist, Composer, Guitarist
Birthdate: August 5, 1947
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Fort Recovery

 40 John James Audubon

John James Audubon
5
Famous As: Naturalist, Painter, Ornithologist
Birthdate: April 26, 1785
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Les Cayes
Died: January 27, 1851

 41 Carmine Giovinazzo

Carmine Giovinazzo
5
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: August 24, 1973
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Richmond [now Staten Island], New York City, New York, USA

 42 Patrisse Cullors

Patrisse Cullors
7
Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: June 20, 1983
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, U.S.

 43 Charles Addams

Charles Addams
4
Famous As: Draughtsperson, Illustrator, Artist, Painter, Writer
Birthdate: January 7, 1912
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Westfield
Died: September 29, 1988

Mostly known as a cartoonist for The New Yorker, Charles Addams was known for including dark humor in his works. Also known by his pseudonym, Chas Addams, he gained fame for his cartoons about a family of ghosts, which later inspired The Addams Family series of the 1960s.

 44 Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons
5
Famous As: Sculptor, Painter
Birthdate: January 21, 1955
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: York

Jeff Koons is an American artist best known for his versatility and work that deals with popular culture. Koons is also known for his sculptures, such as large balloon animals made using stainless steel to achieve mirror-finish surfaces. One of the most successful artists of his generation, Koons has produced works that have earned a couple of record auction prices.

 45 Isamu Noguchi

Isamu Noguchi
5
Famous As: Artist and landscape architect
Birthdate: November 17, 1904
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Died: December 30, 1988

Isamu Noguchi was an American landscape architect and artist best remembered for designing the iconic Noguchi table. His sculptures are credited with bridging East and West and some of his works are considered landmarks of 20th-century art. In 1982, he won the Edward MacDowell Medal. In 1987, he received the National Medal of Arts for his contribution to the arts. 

 46 Julian Schnabel

Julian Schnabel
4
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter, Painter
Birthdate: October 26, 1951
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: New York City

 47 Barbara Kruger

Barbara Kruger
4
Famous As: Conceptual Artist
Birthdate: January 26, 1945
Sun Sign: Aquarius

 48 Frank Frazetta

Frank Frazetta
4
Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: February 9, 1928
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: May 10, 2010

Frank Frazetta was an American science fiction and fantasy artist remembered for his work on comic books, LP record album covers, paperback book covers, posters, and paintings among other media. Nicknamed the Godfather of fantasy art, Frazetta is also considered one of the 20th century's best-known illustrators. He was honored at the World Fantasy Convention with a Life Achievement Award. 

 49 Grant Wood

Grant Wood
4
Famous As: Former painter particularly well known for American Gothic (1930), which has become an iconic example of early 20th-century American art
Birthdate: February 13, 1891
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Anamosa, Iowa, United States
Died: February 12, 1942

 50 Dale Chihuly

Dale Chihuly
9
Famous As: Glass Artist
Birthdate: September 20, 1941
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Tacoma, Washington, United States