WARSHAWSKY, ABEL "BUCK" (28 Dec. 1883-30 May 1962) and ALEXANDER "XANDER" (29 Mar. 1887-28 May 1945), artists, were 2 of 9 children of Ezekiel and Ida Warshawsky, Jewish immigrants from Poland who came to Cleveland from Sharon, Pa. Both brothers attended Cleveland School of Art and the Natl. Academy of Design in New York, then went to Europe. Abel went to France in 1908, through LOUIS RORIMER†, his Cleveland Art School sculpting instructor; and until 1938 divided his time between Paris and Brittany. Abel described himself as a classic Impressionist. Alexander went to Paris in 1916. He painted Breton peasants and landscapes using flat surfaces and clear outlines, smoothly brushed surfaces, and highly keyed colors. Both brothers were pacifists, serving together behind the French lines in WORLD WAR I, decorating soldiers' huts with murals and organizing sports events. In recognition for this work, the French government asked them to exhibit in the Luxembourg Gallery. They returned at least once a year to Cleveland. Several times they exhibited jointly.
The threat of WORLD WAR II forced Abel to leave France and settle in Monterey, Calif. His works were shown in many galleries and acquired by the French government and 13 American art museums. He was named Chevalier of the Legion of Honor by the French government. He married 3 times: to Vantine Laudell (divorced 1926), Minny (died), and Ruth Tate, whom he married in 1939.
Alex organized an exhibition in Cleveland of Postimpressionism in 1914, a controversial show, but giving Cleveland the opportunity to view modern art. Alex lived in Paris over a 25-year period, exhibiting his paintings during his frequent journeys to the U.S. He lived in Los Angeles 12 years before his death. He married Berthe, a designer of children's clothes, and had a son, Ivan.
Warshawsky Family Papers, WRHS.
Bassham, Ben L., ed. The Memories of an American Impressionist: Abel G. Warshawsky (1980).
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