Culture

The Greatest Painters Of All Time 

Ranker Art
Updated June 14, 2019 22.7k votes 4.2k voters 161.9k views 31 items

List Rules Vote up history's greatest artists who worked with the medium of paint.

This list contains information on the greatest painters of all time, ranked from best to worst by user votes. History's greatest painters come in many forms. Some famous painters are impressionists while other painters are surrealists. Many of the top painters of all time have been inspired by a variety of classic religious imagery and biblical verses.

What artists will you find on this greatest painters of all time list? Leonardo da Vinci has to be near the top. His works include such iconic paintings as the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. He was known as a Renaissance artist and his works now auction for hundreds of millions of dollars. Pablo Picasso is another one of the best painters of all time.

Claude Monet has inspired many art fans with his beautiful Water Lilies. More modern artists including Jackson Pollock, Georgia O'Keeffe, and Roy Lichtenstein are also featured on this famous painters list.

Which artist do you think is the greatest painter of all time? Vote your favorites to the top.

Michelangelo is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Painters Of All Time
Photo:  smithsonianmag.com/Via Pinterst

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, commonly known as Michelangelo, was an Italian sculptor, painter, architect, poet, and engineer of the High Renaissance who exerted an unparalleled influence on the development of Western art. Considered the greatest living artist in his lifetime, he has since been held as one of the greatest artists of all time. Despite making few forays beyond the arts, his versatility in the disciplines he took up was of such a high order that he is often considered a contender for the title of the archetypal Renaissance man, along with his fellow Italian Leonardo da Vinci. A number of his works in painting, sculpture, and architecture rank among the most famous ...more on Wikipedia

Artworks: David, The Creation of Adam, Sistine Chapel ceiling, Pietà, Bacchus, + more

Age: Dec. at 89 (1475-1564)

Birthplace: Caprese Michelangelo, Italy

Associated periods or movements: High Renaissance, Italian Renaissance, Renaissance

Are they the greatest?

More Michelangelo 

#23 of 473 Famous Role Models We'd Like to Meet In Personfeaturing Things You Didn't Know About The Sistine Chapellisted on Famous Left-Handed Artists

Vincent van Gogh is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Painters Of All Time
Photo: wallyg/flickr/CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

Vincent Willem van Gogh (Dutch: [ˈvɪnsɛnt ˈʋɪləm vɑŋ ˈɣɔx] (listen); 30 March 1853 – 29 July 1890) was a Dutch post-impressionist painter who is among the most famous and influential figures in the history of Western art. In just over a decade he created about 2,100 artworks, including around 860 oil paintings, most of which date from the last two years of his life. They include landscapes, still lifes, portraits and self-portraits, and are characterised by bold colours and dramatic, impulsive and expressive brushwork that contributed to the foundations of modern art. He was not commercially successful, and his suicide at 37 came after years of mental illness and poverty. Born into an ...more on Wikipedia

Artworks: The Starry Night, The Potato Eaters, Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers, Portrait of Adeline Ravoux, Portrait of Dr. Gachet (First Version), + more

Age: Dec. at 37 (1853-1890)

Birthplace: Zundert, Kingdom of the Netherlands

Associated periods or movements: Post-Impressionism

Are they the greatest?

More Vincent van Gogh 

#48 of 926 People We Wish Were Still Alive #83 of 473 Famous Role Models We'd Like to Meet In Personfeaturing 14 Facts About The Tortured, Miserable Life of Vincent van Gogh

Leonardo da Vinci is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Painters Of All Time
Photo:  WikiImages/Pixabay/CC0 1.0

Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci was an Italian polymath, painter, sculptor, architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer. He is widely considered to be one of the greatest painters of all time and perhaps the most diversely talented person ever to have lived. His genius, perhaps more than that of any other figure, epitomized the Renaissance humanist ideal. Leonardo has often been described as the archetype of the Renaissance Man, a man of "unquenchable curiosity" and "feverishly inventive imagination". According to art historian Helen Gardner, the scope and depth of his interests were without precedent and "his mind and ...more on Wikipedia

Artworks: Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, Bacchus, Adoration of the Magi, Annunciation, + more

Age: Dec. at 67 (1452-1519)

Birthplace: Vinci, Italy

Associated periods or movements: High Renaissance

Are they the greatest?

More Leonardo da Vinci 

#73 of 1,183 The Best Writers of All Time #2 of 473 Famous Role Models We'd Like to Meet In Personlisted on 16 Famous Bodies From History Found In Inconspicuous Places

Rembrandt is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Painters Of All Time
Photo:  reddit.com/Via Pinterest

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (, also US: , Dutch: [ˈrɛmbrɑnt ˈɦɑrmə(n)soːn vɑn ˈrɛin] (listen); 15 July 1606 – 4 October 1669) was a Dutch draughtsman, painter and printmaker. An innovative and prolific master in three media, he is generally considered one of the greatest visual artists in the history of art and the most important in Dutch art history. Unlike most Dutch masters of the 17th century, Rembrandt's works depict a wide range of style and subject matter, from portraits and self-portraits to landscapes, genre scenes, allegorical and historical scenes, biblical and mythological themes as well as animal studies. His contributions to art came in a period of great wealth and cultural ...more on Wikipedia

Artworks: The Night Watch, Artemisia, David and Uriah, Self-Portrait, The Storm on the Sea of Galilee, + more

Age: Dec. at 63 (1606-1669)

Birthplace: Leiden, Kingdom of the Netherlands

Associated periods or movements: Dutch Golden Age, Realism, Baroque

Are they the greatest?

More Rembrandt 

#116 of 2,830 The Most Influential People of All Time #115 of 1,472 The Greatest Minds of All Time