Paintings & Drawings – Siblings

Countless paintings and drawings of siblings, young and old, take the form of traditional, forward-looking portraits, or in more recent decades, images of the backs of siblings walking down a path or sitting in a park.

In our curated gallery, works were chosen for their artistic merit, but also for illustrating something meaningful about this unique relationship. Many of these paintings and drawings are also cited as personal favorites by numerous reviewers. Which are your favorites? We welcome your comments!

Sofonisba Anguissola, Three Siblings of the Gaddi Family with Dog, c. 1555-1560

Sofonisba Anguissola, Three Siblings of the Gaddi Family with Dog, c. 1555-1560, oil on panel, 74 cm x 95 cm, private collection.

Ralph Earl, Portrait of Two Brothers. ca. 1790.

Ralph Earl, Portrait of Two Brothers. ca. 1790. Oil on canvas. 50 x 39 cm.

Thomas Couture, Two Sisters. 1792.

Thomas Couture, Two Sisters (Study for The Promises). 1792. Oil on canvas. 109.2 x 81.6 cm. Private Collection.

Anonymous, Siblings Balarama and Krishna. 1800s.

Anonymous, Untitled (painting of siblings Balarama and Krishna, avatars of the Hindu god Vishnu. A Kalighat painting). 1800s. Cleveland Museum of Art.

Abbott Handerson Thayer, Brother and Sister (Mary and Gerald Thayer), 1889.

Abbott Handerson Thayer, Brother and Sister (Mary and Gerald Thayer), 1889, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of John Gellatly, 1929.6.114

Pablo Picasso, Two Sisters (The Meeting). 1902.

Pablo Picasso, Two Sisters (The Meeting). 1902. Oil on canvas on panel. 152 x 100 cm. The State Hermitage Museum.

Erich Heckel, Siblings (Geschwister). 1913.

Erich Heckel, Siblings (Geschwister) (from the portfolio Eleven Woodcuts). 1913. Woodcut. 61.4 x 47 cm.

Erich Heckel, Geschwister. Frère et soeur. 1913.

Erich Heckel, Geschwister. Frère et soeur [Brother and sister]. 1913. Karlsruhe.

Helene Schjerfbeck, Siblings. 1913.

Helene Schjerfbeck, Siblings. 1913.

Henri Matisse. Three Sisters with an African Sculpture. 1917.

Henri Matisse. Three Sisters with an African Sculpture (Les Trois soeurs à la sculpture africaine), between May and mid-July 1917.
Henri Matisse. Three Sisters with an African Sculpture (Les Trois soeurs à la sculpture africaine). 1917. Oil on canvas. 195.9 x 97.2 cm. © Succession H. Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS).

Paul Klee, Brother and Sister. 1930.

Paul Klee, Brother and Sister. 1930. Oil on canvas.

Marc Chagall, Joseph reconnu par ses frères. 1931.

Marc Chagall, Joseph reconnu par ses frères (Joseph has been recognized by his brothers). 1931. Gouache, oil on paper. 62 x 49 cm. © Marc Chagall | Fair Use.

Marc Chagall, Joseph and his Brothers (from the Bible Series). 1958.

Chagall’s etchings and paintings of Joseph and his brothers, the betrayal and shame, are among the most emotional of Chagall’s work. Read more here.

Marc Chagall, Joseph and his Brothers (from the Bible Series). 1958. Etching with hand-applied watercolor on Arches Paper. 28.6 x 23.5 cm.

Salvador Dali, Portrait of My Dead Brother. 1963.

Salvador Dali, Portrait of My Dead Brother. 1963. Oil, canvas. 175.26 x 175.26 cm. Salvador Dali Museum. © Salvador Dali | Fair Use.

Twins Seven-Seven, The Spirits of My Reincarnation Brothers and Sisters. 2007.

Twins Seven-Seven, The Spirits of My Reincarnation Brothers and Sisters. 2007. Ink, batik, dye, watercolor, acrylic, and oil on cloth. 58 x 60 in. © Woodmere Art Museum | Fair Use.

Shirley Charlton, No More Tears Brother. 2009.

From the artist’s Malawi period. The intimacy of this painting is highlighted by the contrast between light and dark. See Charlton’s other paintings at shirleycharlton.com.

Shirley Charlton, No More Tears Brother. 2009. Pastel on paper. © Shirley Charlton | Fair Use.

Miabo Enyadike, Sibling Rivalry. 2020. 

Artist Statement: “Siblings, some of us have some don’t, some siblings bring us great joy, while some bring us much sorrow. My painting is one of rivalry between two siblings, were one overshadows the other and that creates a lot of emotional despair.” For sale on Saatachi Art.

Sibling Rivalry by Enyadike Miabo. 2020
Miabo Enyadike, Sibling Rivalry. 2020. Ink, marker, stencil, spray paint on paper. 31.5 x 39.4. For sale.

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