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John Decker (artist)
German artist

John Decker (artist)

John Decker (artist)
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro German artist
Is Painter Cartoonist
From Germany United States of America
Field Arts
Gender male
Birth Berlin
Death Hollywood
John Decker (artist)
The details (from wikipedia)

Biography

John Decker (b. Leopold von der Decken, November 8, 1895 in Berlin Germany – June 8, 1947 in Hollywood) was a painter, set designer and caricaturist in Hollywood during the 1930s and 1940s.
As a teenager, Decker lived in London, painting scenery in theatres; this was interrupted by the advent of the First World War, when he was arrested as an enemy alien and interned on the Isle of Man. In 1921, he changed his name to John Decker and emigrated to America, where he worked as a cartoonist for the New York Evening World until 1928, when he moved to Hollywood and took up fine art. Many film stars, including Anthony Quinn, Errol Flynn, Charlie Chaplin, Greta Garbo, and the Marx Brothers, commissioned Decker to paint their portraits, and many of his works were used in films: the paintings of the frustrated artist protagonist in Fritz Lang's 1945 film Scarlet Street were actually by Decker. One of his most famous portraits, depicting his friend and drinking companion W.C. Fields as Queen Victoria, hung for many years at Chasen's Restaurant in West Hollywood, California. An oil painting of John Wayne, which Wayne commissioned Decker to paint in 1945, sold for $71,700 at a John Wayne estate auction conducted by Heritage Auctions on October 6, 2011. Like his friends Fields and John Barrymore, the years of seemingly endless drinking sprees wreaked massive abuse on his body, resulting in a premature death. Decker died on June 8, 1947, at age 51.

Family background

Castle Ringelheim in Salzgitter, Germany, where Decker's father grew up

Decker's mother Maria Anna Avenarius (1865–1918) was an opera singer, performing Wagner operas in Berlin and Bayreuth.:9 Her father, Ferdinand Avenarius, was an actor. Decker's father, Graf Ernst August von der Decken (1867–1934), grew up in the castle Ringelheim in Salzgitter Germany and became a reporter for British and German newspapers. His parents met in the opera of Berlin and Bayreuth. In 1897, two years after their son's birth they moved to London and married in April 1898 in Greenwich.

Decker's grandfather Graf Georg von der Decken was a member of the German Reichstag. Like his grandson, George was an artist and created huge oil paintings of his castle, paintings for the neighbouring church, and carved wooden sculptures.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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