• Issue: April 1974
  • Designer: M. Pereg
  • Stamp size: 20 x 51.4 mm
  • Plate no.: 412
  • Sheet of 20 stamps Tabs: 10
  • Printers: Government Printers

Moise Kisling "Woman in blue"

Moise Kisling was born in Cracow, Poland in 1891. In the year 1910 he came to Paris where he lived in poverty until an anonymous patron, acting on the recommendation of the author Sholem Asch, supported him for one year. In the course of time Kisling established a reputation as one of the most important and widely recognized artists of Montparnasse.

After the first World War he became friendly with Modigliani with whom he shared a studio and was also friendly with Soutine. In common with the rest of the Jewish artists who lived and worked in Paris in the period between the two World Wars, Kisling was extremely sensitive and given to melancholy. His serious and tranquil paintings, like those of Modigliani and in contrast to the work of Soutne and other Jewish artists, do not express struggle or pain; there is in them none of the distortions of expressionism, but rather a peace and tranquillity of spirit and a feeling for colour and elegance of line. "Woman in Blue" (1922), from the Tel Aviv Museum's collection, is typical of Kisling's portraits which are, as a rule, clearly contoured, hurriedly drawn and executed in subdued colours. He was one of the few artists of the Paris School who relied to a great extent on the classic effects of light and shade.

His figures with their characteristic twisting lines, so full of sensitivity, remind one of Modigliani's work. Kisling, like Modigliani, was particularly interested in portraits and in the female nude. During the years 1941-1946 Kisling took refuge in the USA where he executed numerous portraits including that of Arthur Rubinstein. He returned to Paris after its liberation and died in his home in the south of France in 1952.

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"Mother and child" (1924) A Statue in bronze by Hannah Orloff (1888-1968)

Hannah Orloff, one of the outstanding sculptors of our time, was born in Tsari-Konstantinovka, a small town in the Ukraine, to parents steeped in Hebrew culture and conscious of their Jewishness. Hannah shared these feelings and, as a girl of 16, emigrated to Israel with her family who went to live in the Newe Zedek quarter of Jaffa in 1906. Her outstanding skill in sculpting was discovered in Paris which she reached in 1910, there she studied art and sculpture at the Ecole des arts decoratifs.

Her first sculptures were in the cubist style which had then made its appearance on the artistic scene. However, her typical personal style is expressed in her full, flowing, rounded forms; busts; human figures; in the full-bodied, graceful women in her statues of mothers; the children full of charm and softness; her statues of human beings, birds and animals executed, at times, with a slight trace of humour - full of vitality and a love of man and nature.

Towards the end of her career, her style changed her line sharpened - her works, full of movement and action, seem to be moving out into space.

Hannah Orloff was a master craftsman who had complete control over the materials she fashioned. This can be seen in her "Madonna" (1913)cast in cement; in her bust of Bialik (1926) cast in bronze; in her bust of Hannah Rovina (1936) carved in wood and in her countless major and minor works.

Among the monuments which she has executed are one in memory of Dov Gruner, erected in Ramat Gan; the "Flying Birds" to the memory of Israel's fallen pilots - at Kibbutz Revivim; "Mother and Child" - on the shores of Lake Kinneret at En Gev and the memorial at Kibbutz Bet Oren.

Hannah Orloff was accustomed to divide her time between Paris and Tel Aviv. During the second World War she was pursued by the Nazis but was saved by her friends and found refuge in Switzerland. On her return to Paris after the liberation she found her studio in ruins and had to begin all over again. Hannah Orloff died in Tel Aviv while her friends and admirers around the world were celebrating her 80th birthday.

Her sculptures are to be found in numerous private collections, in Israel museums and in museums throughout the world.

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"Girl in blue" by Chaim Soutine (1893-1943)

Chaim Soutine was born in the village of Smilovitchi near Minsk in Lithuania, the tenth of eleven children of a poor Jewish tailor. He passed a poor childhood which he later remembered with bitterness. Poverty was to haunt him until 1923, when he began to have a reputation as a painter.

After first studying art with the painter Krueger in Minsk, he spent three years at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vilna from 1910 to 1913 and then went to Paris, where he lived, with the exception of short intervals, until his death. In Paris, after a short spell at the Ecole des Beaux Arts, he associated with many of the artists of the School of Paris, including Kikoine and Kremegne whom he knew from Lithuania, Chagall, Leger, Kisling, Laurens, Pascin, Lipchitz, Zadkine, and especially Modigliani.

Soutine soon developed a highly personal, violen3ly emotional style. He always painted directly from nature, not from drawings or from memory, and he painted at great speed. His landscapes, portraits and stilllifes are painted in strident colours, in large strokes and with intentional distortion of forms. Soutine destroyed a large proportion of his own paintings, especially his early works.

The almost frenetic movement of the earlier works lessens somewhat after 1923, and Soutine's deformations become less extreme. "Girl in Blue", panted in 1938-39, belongs to a series of paintings of children which Soutine made late in his life at a period when he was painting little. In its sweet, gentle character it is typical of these late works.

The painting is at the Israel Museum as a gift of Mr. and Mrs. Edwin E. Hokin of Chicago.

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Paintings & Sculpture