Maurice Braun (1877-1941) was an important American / California Impressionist artist. He often created his paintings en plein-air and his landscape paintings are masterful renditions of nature. His skill at portraying both light and shade helped to put San Diego on the map of the American art scene.
Maurice Braun was born in a small town in Hungary and his family moved to New York City when Maurice Braun was about 4 years old. As a child Maurice Braun spent a lot of time visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art and he eventually won all the available scholarships to the National Academy of Design in New York City (despite parental disapproval). The formal art education that Maurice Braun received from the National Academy of Design was followed by a year of study with artist and teacher, William Merritt Chase. Maurice Braun travelled to Europe in 1902, painting in Austria, Germany and Hungary.
When Maurice Braun returned from Europe he again settled in New York where he continued to create art and paintings for several years. During this time he became known as a portrait artist even though he was also creating landscape paintings. Maurice Braun moved to San Diego in 1909. He was a religious man and an active member of the Theosophical Society which was strong in the San Diego, California area. Light was a metaphor in the Society and this was a painting technique that Maurice Braun perfected in his art and painting.
A little more than a year after Maurice Braun arrived in San Diego, California he held his first one-man exhibition. The exhibition was made up of dozens of paintings and drawings of San Diego city and the countryside, but he also included a few portraits and New England landscapes. Maurice Braun exhibited his paintings continuously during his lifetime and a number of art galleries also represented his paintings.
Maurice Braun is particularly well known for his landscape paintings created in San Diego County. He also created paintings, sketches and exhibited his paintings in other parts of the country. Due to his level of activity outside of California, Maurice Braun is also known as an American artist.
During the 1920's, he would travel once a year to paint on the East Coast. Maurice Braun created a number of New England harbor scene paintings during the 1920's and a number of still-life paintings during the 1930's.
Maurice Braun remained active as an artist during the later years of his life and he continued to create many sketches and paintings. Maurice Braun died in San Diego on November 7th, 1941.