LITHOGRAPH ON HANDMADE WATERMARKED WOVE PAPER SIGNED 'SHAPIRO 1973' LOWER RIGHT AND NUMBERED FROM THE E.A. Roman numeral edition of 30. Signed and numbered in pencil. full margins.
This reclining Nude has a Fauvist Naive feel to it. reminiscent of Matisse.
Shmuel Shapiro was born in 1924 in New Britain, Connecticut the son of Jewish immigrants who emigrated from Russia at the turn of the century. The family ran a small dairy farm.
After completing school he began at age 15 to study art at the Art School in Hartford. From 1943-46, during the war, he served in the Army in Europe.
Then studied again in Hartford and later in Boston, New York, Indianapolis, and finally at Indiana University in Bloomington. Here he became an assistant professor.
In 1955 he received a Fulbright scholarship to study in Paris. There he met artists like Brancusi, Giacometti, Corneille and Hayter.
In 1957 he became a lecturer at the American Students and Artists Center in Paris. There followed a brief stay in the U.S. until he moved to rural Rhön (Germany).
In 1964 produced figurative drawings based on the persecution and eradication of Jews during the Nazi rule. He destroyed many of these graphic prints and his early work.
He gradually broke away from the representational & his paintings became freer. Shapiro moved regularly & including to Karlsruhe, the Alsace, Basel and 1970-71. At that time he met Mark Tobey, whom he greatly admired and revered. In between, he repeatedly made trips to USA but he gradually spent more time in Europe.
In 1975 he finally settled in Immenried in the Allgau. He was always in need of money and sold many of his paintings directly from the studio. After a serious illness and deep depression, he found his way back to work with new friends. Until his death he painted like a man possessed, and left a large oeuvre.
Shmuel Shapiro died on 12/08/1983 in Ravensburg.
His painting style is American influenced but also with European influences such as the French informal or German Expressionism.
Shapiro's images are a celebration of color, he loved it, from light to dark colors, from the abstract to the figurative. Shapiro is represented in may collections worldwide including 11 works in the Tate Gallery, London.