Vintage Oil Painting of a Young Man in Baltimore dated 1903 by Saul Bernstein (d. 1905)
Vintage Oil Painting of a Young Man in Baltimore dated 1903 by Saul Bernstein (d. 1905).
This artwork measures Approximately 11 inches tall by 7.5 wide and about 17 inches tall by 14 inches in the frame hand painted in the United States.
Saul Bernstein was a native of Lithuania, and arrived penniless in the United States at the age of sixteen.
He began to paint while employed as a clerk in a general store in West Virginia and later studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art and at the Art Students League in New York.
While in Paris to complete his training at the Academie Julian, two of his paintings were accepted for exhibition at the annual Salon.
Bernstein worked in the Netherlands before returning to Baltimore in 1903 where he opened a studio.
Depressed by poor health, however, he took his own life while still in his thirties.
Bernstein specialized in interior scenes and in figure studies; his work is ofter marked by a certain poignancy.
The Baltimore Museum of art: Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Michael A. Abrams, BMA 1955.186 " The "Baltimore Sun" has recently featured an article mentioning Bernstein as a character in Caitlin Bell's one act play "Three Jewish Lives".
The article is as follows: "Caitlin Bell acknowledges that the three historic Baltimore figures on whom she based on her one-act play, "Three Jewish Lives", may have never been in the same place at the same time.
But there were connections.
Ella Gutman Hutzler - daughter of one Baltimore department store owner and wife of another - knew Henrietta Szold, who founded Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America.
Szold, in turn, was a mentor and mother figure to Russian-born artist Saul Bernstein.
One night in November 1901, Szold had a showing of Bernstein's paintings at her Lombard Street home.
Ella Hutzler's husband, David, bought one of the paintings.
"Saul was studying in Paris at the time, but because his work was here, we took creative license and brought him back from Paris for one evening," explains Bell, a local playwright and arts educator.
Produced by the Jewish Museum of Maryland, "Three Jewish Lives" will be performed there at 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. Feb. 24.
Because of Bernstein's background, the museum is billing the show as its contribution to Baltimore's Vivat! St. Petersburg festival.
The cast consists of Bell's mother, Tana Hicken, in the role of Szold; Marsha Becker as Hutzler; and Joseph Corgan as Bernstein.
Direction is by Bell and Harriet Lynn.
The impetus for Three Lives came from several separate impulses.
The first was a walking tour of Baltimore's former department store district, led by Lynn, in the guise of Ella Hutzler.
Conducted in October 2001 and April 2002 for the Jewish Museum, the tour was a typical project for Lynn, who heads the Baltimore-based Heritage Theater Artists' Consortium, which specializes in living history and museum theater.
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