45 Most Famous Paintings of All Times


Many of these paintings are a testimony to the skill and talents of many artists from different parts of the world. Pablo Picasso rightly said that every child is a born artist, the problem is to retain that artist within themselves.

This universe is full of art and inspiration, that is what everyone can see, but it takes a really talented and visionary artist to pick paint and brush and illustrate their thoughts, visions and this beautiful universe into paintings.

Most Beautiful and Expensive Paintings

To blow you off the ground, we have gone through the great detail to find some of the best art work that has ever been produced. Below are 45 most beautiful, famous and expensive paintings of all times.

45. Anders zorn our daily bread

Anders_Zorn by Vårt_dagliga_bröd

Painted in 1886 “Our daily bread” by Anders zorn from Sweden, depicts his mother sitting at the edge of a ditch, and cooking potatoes for the harvesters. The painting is from his private collection and shows his mother’s sacrifices.

He was in his mid 20s when he painted it to pay a tribute to his mother’s love for him and his big joint family. The composition came in public domain, after the artist’s death in 1920. After that it was purchased by National museum Stockholm.

44. The Wounded Angel

The_Wounded_Angel by Hugo_Simberg

The painting with two gloomy boys carrying an angel on a stretcher with bandaged forehead and a bloodied wing makes people curious in a second. And the direct gaze of the boy to the right touches the viewers ‘soul.

The composition is still considered as one of the finest work of art since 1903, and it is in the same year it was produced by Finnish symbolist painter Hugo Simberg.

The painting was a source of strength for Simberg, as he had been suffering from meningitis from a very long time. In 2006, the painting was voted Finland’s “National Painting” through a contest organized by the Ateneum art museum.

43. Christina’s World

Christina's World by Andrew Wyeth

Christina’s World is one of the most famous paintings of 20th century by American painter Andrew Wyeth.

The 1948’s canvas depicts a woman, Anna Christina who is crawling up from a yellowish-brown grass field, and looking lovingly at a gray farmhouse on the top of the crag. The woman in the painting was suffering from a muscular disorder that prevented her from hiking.  However, she was still doing an effort to get to the farmhouse that was situated quite far off.

The challenge here for the artist was to do impartiality to her extraordinary conquest of life which most people would consider hopeless. The beautiful painting with a deep meaning and desire to achieve is currently on display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

42. NightHawks

Nighthawks by Edward Hopper

Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks is one painting that depicts the elusive assessment of today’s society. The four characters in the painting are isolated and disconnected from their environment despite being in a chic environment.

On the outside it looks that the man and woman are holding hands however on closer inspection they are not even looking at each other. The other two characters also look like talking to each other however they are not.

The painting was bought immediately after it was completed by Hopper by the Art Institute of Chicago which remains there till date. Although Hopper claimed that the location was real however people were not able to find any such restaurant. The painting gives an idea that everyone in this world is alone since the characters are disconnected and placed in an ambiguous relationship.

The painting was produced by Hopper in 1942 on canvas and was painted with oil.

41. Glow of Hope

Glow of Hope by SL Haldankar

The Glow of hope also referred to as the “Woman with the Lamp” is one mater piece from S.L. Haldankar. This masterpiece was produced in 1945-46. Haldankar was stuck with the idea of painting it on an Indian Festival Diwali – The festival of lights; when he saw his daughter in a beautiful Indian outfit saree with a candle in one hand and her other hand protecting the flame from the wind.




salvator mundi painting

萨尔瓦托·蒙迪(Salvator Mundi)这件66厘米x 45厘米长、宽的艺术品是1500世纪意大利文艺复兴艺术家莱昂纳多(Leonardo)创作的。

这幅中型油画将耶稣描绘成世界的救世主,右手画十字架,左手拿着一个透明的水晶球。这幅画被称为是一幅丢失的原作的复制品,原作被重新发现和修复,并于2011-2012年在伦敦国家美术馆(National Gallery)举办的莱昂纳多(Leonardo)大型展览中展出。



Rembrandt Christ in the Storm on the Lake of Galilee


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38. Dog Lying in the Snow

Franz Marc Dog Lying in the Snow

This popular composition was created in 1911 by a German-based artist, Franz Marc.

The painting with angular aspects features Marc’s own Siberian Shepherd dog named Russi, lying carefree on white freezing snow in the month of January, near the village where he lived.

The scene featuring primary colors of yellow, blue and their combinations, illustrates the affection of dog with nature. Marc was known for painting animals, as he felt they were pure and closer to God. Of all his popular creations, this was very intimate and close to his heart.

37. Portrait of Mari Clasen

Halfdan Egedius Portrait of Mari Clasen

Portrait of Mari Clasen is one of the most liked oil paintings in the world. The Drammen, Norway-based artist Halfdan Johnsen Egedius painted it in 1895, when he was only 17-years.

He wonderfully blended the colors to describe the beauty of Norway’s folk costume Bunad, worn by Mari Clasen, a young pretty woman from South Central Norway. The painting speaks a lot about the beauty and culture of the country.

36. The Old Guitarist

The Old Guitarist by Pablo Picasso

The old guitarist is one of the most haunting images created by Pablo Picasso since Picasso had restricted himself to a cold monochromatic blue palette depicting the emotional, psychological themes of human misery and alienation. The painting is an epitome of a timeless expression of human sufferings.

Picasso produced the painting while working in Barcelona in 1903. This was known as the blue period of Picasso (1901 to 1904). The subject of this masterpiece of Picasso is an old man although emaciated however still holding to his guitar and playing it. A remarkable effect to the painting comes out in the form of the old man’s bony frame.

The painting can be attributed to the lifestyle led by Picasso in that time period since he was quite poor in that period and his subjects of art in that particular period were people from the lowest strata of that particular society – beggars, prostitutes, single mothers and drunks.


桑德罗·波提切利(SandroBotticelli)的《维纳斯的诞生》(The Birth of Venus)是一幅描绘女神维纳斯(Venus)从海上崛起为一位美丽女性的绘画。这幅简单绘画中最引人注目的部分是维纳斯女神美丽的脸和她害羞的姿势。它目前位于佛罗伦萨乌菲齐画廊。


A Bachelor's Dog painting the bold bluff painting a friend in need painting



Portrait of Madame Récamier



No.5, 1948 painting



the son of a man painting

雷内·马格里提斯(ReneMagrittees)所画的《人子》(The Son of Man)是一幅展现自己的作品,他穿着黑色西装,但用一个苹果代替了他的脸。


royal red and blue painting



Massacre of the Innocents painting



A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte painting



The Dance by Henri Matisse is based on the art form of fauvisim that is depcited by bright colors. This painting is about a few people dancing together in a circle, and is especially noteworthy for its bright blue background.

26. American Gothic

American Gothic grant wood painting

American Gothic symbolizes the grit and determination of Americans during the Great Depression. In this painting, Grant Wood, shows a stern-looking couple standing in front of a house with Gothic windows.

25. The Flower Carrier

The Flower Carrier diego rivera painting

Painted by the most popular Mexican painter of the 20th century, this painting shows how a person is struggling to carry a huge flower basket on his back. Its bright colors are a trademark of Diego Rivera.

24. Whistler’s Mother

Whistler’s Mother james mcneill whistler painting

Also known as “Arrangement in Grey and Black. The Artist’s Mother,” it is one of the most famous painting by American artist James McNeill Whistler. In this painting, Whistler depicts his mother sitting on a chair against a grey wall. This painting is so called because the artist has used only black and grey shades in this painting.

23. The Persistence of Memory

The Persistence of Memory salvador deli painting

This painting by the Spanish artist Salvador Dali is a classic example of surrealism where hard and soft things are present side by side. In this picture, a soft image of clock slides in the background of a hard table.

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22. Portrait of Dora Maar

Portrait of Dora Maar pablo picaso

Pablo Picasso is one of the most accomplished Spanish painter, and his skill is most evident in this painting. He is the founder of a style called Cubism that shows the same picture from different angles. This picture is about a woman’s face, believed to that of Picasso’s lover, shown from different angles, thereby marking the first of many paintings in cubism style.

21. Portrait de L’Artiste Sans Barbe

Portrait de L'Artiste Sans Barbe van gogh painting

This painting by Van Gogh is an interesting piece because it shows the artist without his beard. It is also one of the few paintings sold by Van Gogh, and it fetched a whopping $71.5 million in 1998, making it one of his most expensive paintings ever sold.


Cafe Terrace at Night van gogh painting



Composition 8 kandinsky painting





la moulin de la galette renoir painting





The Third of May francisco goya painting



las meninas de diego velázquez painting



The Arnolfini Marriage painting



the scream edvard munch poster


11. Water Lilies

Water lilies by Claude Monet

Water lilies, painted by Claude Monet, is a series of 250 oil paintings based on his own flower garden. These paintings are located in different art museums world over.

10. Starry Night

Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh painting

Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh shows the village of Saint-Remy under a swirling sun. It is one of the most well-known images in modern culture and is currently housed in the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

9. Landscape with the Fall of Icarus

landscape with the fall of icarus pieter bruegel

This painting by Dutch artist Pieter Bruegel shows man’s indifference to the suffering of his fellowmen. It is a powerful theme shown in a rather simple way with Icarus, the Greek character suffering under water and people going on with their work.

8. The Creation of Adam

The Creation of Adam by Michelangelo shows how God created Adam. It is one of the paintings that adorn the 12,000 square feet area of the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City.

7. The Last Supper

the last supper mary magdalene painting

The Last Supper is a painting that depicts the last meal that Jesus had with his disciples. Displayed at the dining hall of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan, this painting has also created much controversy around Mary Magdalene, the supposed character sitting next to Jesus.

6. Guernica

Guernica by Picasso painting

Guernica by Picasso depicts the bombing of the city of the Spanish city of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. It is a black and white painting that shows the role of Italians and Germans in this bombing.

5. Girl with a Pearl Earring

girl with a pearl earring johannes painting

The Girl With a Pearl Earring is often known as Dutch Monalisa because the expression on the girl’s face is hard to understand. This painting by Johannes Vermeer has her pearl earrings as the focal point.

4. Beheading of Saint John the Baptist

Beheading of Saint John the Baptist caravaggio

This painting by Caravaggio shows a realistic depiction of a murder moment in a prison. The gloom of the picture and the expressions of the onlookers make it a true classical masterpiece. It is displayed in St. John’s Cathedral in Valletta, Malta.

3. Night Watch

night watch rembrandt wallpaper

Night Watch is one of the most popular pieces of work by Rembrandt. It depicts an entire city moving out led by its captain. A unique aspect is its dark varnish that gives an impression of night scene. It is currently housed in Riksmuseum in Amsterdam.

2. School of Athens

school of athens raphael painting

Painted by Raphael, this painting contains pictures of famous philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle walking in the middle along with other philosophers on the sides. It is now located in the Vatican.

1. Monalisa

mona lisa leonardo da vinci most famous painting

Probably the most famous painting in the world is Monalisa by Leonardo da Vinci. It is a portrait of a lady called Gherardini and is famous because the lady’s expression is indecipherable. This painting is currently displayed in Louvre, France.

Here is our list of the most famous 35 paintings ever done. Which of these is your favorite? Do let us know through your comments.

Ahmad in a nutshell is product of passion, enthusiasm and adventure. He loves to write around anything that involves behaviors, art, business and what makes people happier.

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  1. soumya talwar says:

    I dont think there can be ONE compiled list of the most famous paintings since there are a lot of countries with their own cultures and eras and mindsets, and its a broad area to categorize, but I think you did a good enough job anyway. However I feel that this list is quite narrow, there are quite a few revolutionary movements you missed like dadaism, de stijl, minimalism, abstract expressionism, to name a few. However you did a good job, thank you

    • 帕尼亚瓜 says:


    • Chris says:


    • 布莱斯·赫尔布特 says:


    • 玛丽亚 says:


    • 拉尔夫·沃特斯 says:


    • 雪莉·斯莱 says:


  2. 我喜欢美术,当我看到它的时候,我觉得很怪。。lol爱我一些巴勃罗·毕加索和莱昂纳多·达芬奇

    • 匿名的 says:


  3. 吉米·戴尔 says:


  4. 虽然每个艺术家都有很强的艺术感,但我喜欢威廉·泰勒的绘画。他的画对所有引起我注意的人都有意义和教训,这就是艺术家应该做的。

  5. David says:

    Starry Night. I could look at it hours.

  6. jackiesolo says:

    Could someone explain the art of Mark Rothko please.

    • Kclayt says:

      It’s based majorly on the experience of looking at it. Try visiting the Rothko chapel if you’re ever in Huston. He was a very emotional and contemplative man.

  7. Wendy says:

    I love Guernica. It’s so expressive!

  8. Martin says:

    Concerning the Night Watch: It’s Rijksmuseum not Riksmuseum

  9. Xavi says:

    For me the best has been picasso

  10. Carol McClees says:

    I have seen 5 of them so far and it makes me sad that some are not possible to see. It’s a good thing we can at least see them like this.

  11. Tom says:

    The Pollock shown in entry #32 isn’t No. 5 — it’s actually Autumn Rhythm, located at the Met in NYC. 🙂

  12. Anisa says:

    my favourite is #19
    It’s abstract and everybody can make out it in their way.

  13. james says:

    i love that piece work
    am a fun of art from Uganda

  14. Salman Shahid says:

    This cannot be possible that no painting from the Indian or Arab or Chinese Culture can be present on this list. I could ask “Why is that so?”
    The only present are the Western Cultures . Does
    other cultures of the world haven’t got any grandeur?

    • Ghawanmeh says:

      Dear Friend, I don’t know about Indian or chineese, but as far as the arab world is concerned, they did not paint in those early days, or if they did it was on the snad. Nevertheless they wrote poetry 🙂
      However now I have gathered around 150 middle eastern artists in my website:

  15. biruk says:

    i love it

  16. biruk says:

    hy men could some one explain about the school of athens

  17. Karl says:

    The Mona Lisa isn’t famous because of her smile.

    There are two main factors that experts believe contributed to the painting’s immense fame.

    1). All the publicity it got when it was stolen.

    2.) The fact that Da Vinci always carried the painting with him, died with it next to him, and said “This is my best painting.”

    • Dado Motta says:


  18. 颂歌 says:



  19. rpar says:


  20. 反渗透 says:


  21. Glyxis公司 says:

    如果问我的话,它应该排在前十名。 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Wave_off_Kanagawa

  22. Glyxis公司 says:


  23. 昵称 says:


  24. 拉维沙 says:


  25. 马吉德 says:


  26. 挑剔者 says:

    这里有一些错误需要纠正。正如一位早期评论家指出的那样,所描绘的波拉克画不是1948年的第5幅;事实上,这是一个:编号311950,在MoMA展出(你的照片清楚地显示了,而不是私人持有的编号51488)。此外,第17幅画的全称为“Bal du moulin de la Galette”,并没有翻译成“糕点厨师”,而是翻译成“在Galette moulin de Galette跳舞”(这反过来又是一个地名/风车,大致可以翻译成“棕色面包/硬皮蛋糕风车”)。

    • 麦克 says:


  27. jings says:

    Sad.. where is Frida Kahlo and her amazing art??? 🙁

  28. Cooee says:

    Not a single woman artist is represented here. This is another list simply perpetuating the myth of western male superiority. There are many great paintings by women and it is tedious that lists like this systematically overlook the work of women and no one even comments on it.

  29. Dado Motta says:



  30. Andre Seal says:

    My favorite artist is Van Gogh because I think the way he does his work is amazing. The way he draws pictures, he put marks. Like he puts a lot of marks and then it turns into a picture. I think that’s pretty impressive.

  31. Swapnil Karale says:

    I don’t understand paintings but The scream by Edward Munch has dragged me in into this wonderful world. Old guitarist by Pablo Picasso is also my favourite painting. I emphasise again I don’t understand paintings.

  32. Laura says:

    35 paintings not one female artist named! Nothing from anything outside Western culture!

    • Stef says:

      Yes 35 paintings and not one female artist named! Also, not one Japanese artist named, not one black artist named, not one artist under sixteen named. None of these are complaining but we simply must complain if there is a gender imbalance, right?
      There is no doubt that women have produced great art but the point here is not to fight a crusade for equality but to admire paintings.

      • Huu says:

        If there was interest in female paintings then it would be viewed or popular. Painting wasnt exactly a female profession until recent times. Name me 2 famous female generals, 3 famous astronomers, 4 female pioneer medical researchers. It is a struggle because they werent involved to the same extent as men. Next you will claim obese gays, or eskimos are under represented. For fucks sake

      • Al公司 says:


  33. 洛根 says:


  34. 约格什 says:


  35. 埃里克·Hållet says:


  36. 泽尔 says:


  37. AMM公司 says:


  38. 提拉 says:


  39. 纳亚卡 says:


  40. Nidhi Mehta公司 says:


  41. Jacqline says:


  42. Jacqline says:

    Whoops. I see Whistler’s Mother made the cut after all. 😊

  43. Kulan Chandra MD says:

    Great job Ahmed Raza. The very nature of the topic, choosing from the world’s best artwork, is mind boggling. No one can make a ‘complete ‘ list or a ‘perfect’ list. You came closest to completion or perfection than most others who dared take up this daunting task. Congratulations. Please give us more. May be the best statues. Or the best architectural masterpieces. Thanks.

  44. David says:

    My favorite is the girl with the pearl necklace, soemthing about her eyes, good looking women too, for the top piece has to be The Creation of Adam, its epic on a scale I cant even imagine.

  45. Paint geek says:

    The spolarium should be in here

  46. Gowest says:

    Who painted 7#

  47. Paul says:

    The girl with the pearl earring touches me with her look….it transcends over centuries. Most other paintings I find a bit boring children of their own time.

  48. Chris says:

    ya dat gross and I DISAGREE

  49. Trinidad says:

    I love everything in the world EVERYTHING even bugs and paintings. But the best picture is the don of man. HE HAS (Chuckles) An APPLE FOR A FACE!

  50. Fernando says:

    (trinidad’s brother) OOPS SORRY MEANT (chuckles) SON OF MAN!!!!

  51. JOKAR says:


  52. Yatty says:

    Just like a list of favourite pop, rock or classical songs or the most beautiful women in the world,these compilations will be highly subjective so I will take them as entertaining & fun rather than comprehensive and exhaustive. Just back from Morocco, and some of the art there was simply stunning. No Asian ,Persian,Chinese,female artists’ or my favourite, Carravaggio in the style of Chiaroscuro. Where is the super at Emmaus?

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  57. 哈格普·卡萨比安 says:


  58. 肖恩·费希尔 says:


  59. Utsav Srinet says:


  60. 马克斯 says:


  61. 马克斯 says:


  62. Iain MacD says:


  63. 德瓦 says:


  64. 克里·巴克斯特 says:


  65. 布瑞恩 says:


  66. 特威森 says:


  67. Ronald Radke says:

    I love looking at these most famous paintings. I usually spend a long time soaking in the particular elements which lend to the overall attraction. One of these that stops me every time – I can’t get by it without being rapt by its haunting appeal – is Vermeer’s Girl With a Pearl Earring. Amazing and captivating.

  68. Bookbug says:

    I am saddend by the lack of knowledge, & deplorable writing skills of some of these comments. Western culture did not allow women to openly paint, let alone read. This is why you see very few women artists represented until the present time. Other cultures (China, India…) do have their own beautiful examples of art & culture, but oil paints, cloth canvas, ghesso, acrylics… were not typically utilised until more recent times. This is why we have museums, to learn, study, enjoy, & appreciate every cultures’ unique artistry. You may not find all visually appealing, but art is for individual interpretation & provokes inner contemplation. Just a thought. I enjoyed viewing the paintings & appreciate that in my modern world, I have the ability to see that which was at one time, unattainable. No Alphonse Mucha??

  69. Richard G Davis says:

    I paint and now I believe I am an unknown genius because by definition I paint only from my mind and not from real life. I love those capable of realism for their ability to put reality on canvas or board but I frustrate my self trying to emulate them, I soar when I paint with the freedom of my thoughts. My canvases are given not sold, they are like children to me and now as I age, I wish them to return, it will not happen. perhaps a few hundred years from now they will still be hung and admired, discussed and interpreted, studied and imitated and valued.

  70. Andrea F Wayne says:

    🎨list of many refined male artists 🖼 very good

  71. Xerxes Setna says:

    Great list. But I would have included La Belle Dame Sans Merci by Sir Frank Dicksee

  72. Bimal Mohan Das says:


  73. 琳达 says:


  74. 桑德拉 says:


  75. 巴尔钱德拉·辛德 says:


  76. 亚历克斯 says:

    很好的收藏。我以前没见过毕加索的“老音乐家”。他是个天才,所以使用颜色。我的第一件事是“这里唯一活着的是吉他”,第二件事是:“Ars longa,vita brevis est”。

  77. Dikio Bright公司 says:


  78. 西尔维亚 says:


  79. 埃里克 says:


  80. 埃里克 says:


  81. 珍妮弗 says:


  82. 迪莉娅·马喜力 says:


    Paula Rego的舞蹈绘画。
    A Little Night Music – painting by Dorothea Tanning.

    Not even one of them included!

    Nevertheless, I enjoyed your selection of male artists work, and have always thought that the expressions on the faces of the Mona Lisa, and The Girl With A Pearl Earring both show a particularly high degree of female intelligence. I think they are both just saying non-verbally…please don’t underestimate me! My personal opinion only. Delia Marheineke.

  83. Satyam says:

    Where’s the great waves of kangawa?

  84. Larry says:

    Why do you say 35 then list 45 and then not show 5 of them?

  85. Angel says:

    The one I like most is the scream by Munch. I have had in gallery for about 2 years but every time I look at it, it evokes a certain emotion, can actually hear the shrill of nature screaming.

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