This is a painting on artist board, 22" by 14" inside its narrow modern framing, titled on the reverse in ball point pen "Avocado Tree", signed at lower right "Harry Lieberman" and dated there "62". HARRY LIEBERMAN (1876-1983) was a Polish-born, long-lived artist who didn't begin his artistic career until late in life. Lieberman had been preparing for the rabbinate but emigrated to the United States in 1906 when nearly thirty (some give his date of birth as 1880 rather than 1876). He was a clothing cutter and candy manufacturer, until by chance in his late 70's he took an art class while at the Great Neck (New York) Golden Age Club. Among his teachers was Larry Rivers, who quickly recognized Lieberman's innate talents. Therefore quite by chance, a naive style folk art artist came to be. Lieberman's themes encompassed Talmudic lore, mysticism, Jewish life in Eastern Europe, as he remembered it from his youth, and still life and other non-religious subject matter, delivered in a primitive self-taught style. Stacey Hollander wrote a monograph on Lieberman (1991), and the New York Times published a detailed obituary at his death in 1983. The artist's works are included in major museums, and he is listed in the American Folk ARt Encyclopedia of 20th Century Folk Art and Artists. There are YouTube videos of the artist, a year before his passing, describing his artistic inspiration and drive. This work is in good condition overall, though upon very close inspection one can see some evidence of fine-pattern paint loss (see a few of the close up images), but the faults are overwhelmed by the busy design. This came from the recently dispersed estate of "Rabbi Bill" Kramer, prominent member of the Jewish community on the west side of Los Angeles. It and the two other works I am listing by Lieberman would be fine additions to any collection of Judaica or Jewish art.
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