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Saul Steinberg

(1914-1999)

Caricaturist, Illustrator, Wall painter, Sculptor

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Biography

(b Romania, 1914) Modern cartoonist and illustrator. Saul Steinberg studied philosophy for a year at the University of Bucharest in 1933. The following year, he transferred to the Politecnico in Milan as an architecture student. While in school, Steinberg published his cartoons in a local magazine. Later, his work became the covers of almost 90 issues of The New Yorker. In 1946 his drawings were featured in “Fourteen Americans,” at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. This show also featured works by Arshile Gorky and Isamu Noguchi. Steinberg emerged as one of the first artists in the post-war years to introduce the individual identity as a subject; to make self-creation a central theme in his oeuvre. Georges Seurat, Paul Klee, Egyptian paintings, drawings found in public toilets, primitive art, insane art and embroidery, all influence Steinberg’s art. Steinberg’s compositions "cross the border between art and caricature, illustration, children's art, art brut, satire, while conveying reminiscences of styles from Greek and Oriental to Cubist and Constructivist."(H. Rosenberg, Saul Steinberg, The Whitney Museum of Art, New York, 1978, p.10). His drawings are to be viewed not as illustrations of a doctrine of a worldview but rather as experiences.* (Credit: Christie’s, New York, Post-War and Contemporary Art Morning Session, November 13, 2008, Lot 230)

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