He was born in Szczebrzeszyn on 11 February 1841. He died in Radom on 12 June 1915. He was buried in the local Roman Catholic cemetery.
The artist’s family lived in Warsaw already in eighteen century; well-known doctors (on the spear side) and architects (on the distaff side) were among his ancestors. Józef Brandt was born on 11 February 1841 in Szczebrzeszyn where his father Alfons Brandt, while working as a doctor at Zamoyscy estate, established a hospital.
In 1845, the Brandts’ family came back to Warsaw where the artist’s father died a year later while rendering aid to pauperdom during typhus epidemic. The mother with her son moved to the estate Konary rented by her brother Stanisław Lessl. Here, young Józef Brandt started equestrian education.
His familiarity with horses from childhood was a beginning of attachment that was to last for his whole life.
In 1849, young Brandt returned to Warsaw to start learning at Jan Nepomucen Leszczyński’s real school.
Within the period 1854-1858, he was learning at Noble Institute where he made an acquaintance with Juliusz Kossak who taught him drawing.
Between October 1858 and November 1860, he stayed in Paris where he was learning singing, drawing and painting at Léon Cogniet’s studio.
After his return from Paris, he went to Ukraine for the first time in the company of Juliusz Kossak. His travel experience became a source of his lifelong fascination of Borderland and a life of that place. (…)
If it happened that he painted portraits, they were usually equestrian portraits. Anyway, he portrayed also horses themselves. His great passion was his own stud farm in Orońsk.
During his absence, his stepson Władysław Pruszak took care of it.
A plunder of his estate in Orońsk, and especially requisition of his stud farm by German troops in 1914 caused the artist’s depression and, in opinion of some people, it made a contribution to his death.