Biographical / Historical
Stephan Bourgeois (1881-1964) was an art dealer, historian, writer and gallery owner based in New York City.
Stephan Bourgeois was born in 1881 in Cologne, Germany. He came from a long line of prominent art dealers and collectors. Bourgeois studied law at the University of Geneva, Switzerland and later studied art history at the University of Strasbourg in France as well as the universities of Bonn and Berlin in Germany. After his studies, he traveled extensively and then settled in Paris, France. In 1906, he began his career as an art dealer and consultant for museums and private collections.
Bourgeois immigrated to the United States in 1910 and lived in New York City. From 1911 to 1933, he was the founding director of Bourgeois Galleries. Bourgeois Galleries specialized in Old Master paintings as well as modern art, and featured artists such as Degas, Delacroix, Corot, Cezanne, Renoir, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec, Albert Gleizes, Joseph Stella, Oscar Bluemner, Mario Toppi, and others.
After the gallery closed its doors in 1933, Bourgeois continued his work as an art historian, art dealer, and consultant. He lectured at numerous art institutions and universities such as the Art Institute of Chicago, Columbia University, and New York University. Bourgeois wrote several books including Evolution of Images in Art and Two Polarities of Modern Art: Henri Rousseau and Pablo Picasso. He was especially interested in the life and art of El Greco and he organized an exhibition about him at Knoedler Gallery in 1941 and later wrote a book about the artist. Bourgeois died in 1964.