Ivan Aivazovsky

Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky (July 29, 1817 - May 5, 1900) was a Russian painter of Armenian descent.

Born in the town of Feodosiya, Crimea, he spent his childhood in poverty. His talent as an artist earned him sponsorship and entry to the Simferopol gymnasium and later the St.Petersburg Academy of Arts.

Earning awards for his early landscapes and seascapes, he went on to paint a series of portraits of Crimean coastal towns before travelling throughout Europe. In later life, his paintings of naval scenes earned him a longstanding commission from the Russian Navy.

With funds earned during his successful career as an artist he opened an art school and gallery in his home town of Feodosiya. He left over 6000 works at his death in 1900. He also painted many paintings for the Turkish Sultan which are currently in Turkish museums.