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Louis Lozowick papers, 1898-1974

Biographical Note

Louis Lozowick (1892-1973) is known for his lithographs of New York City, many in the Precisionist mode. As a very young boy in the Ukraine, Lozowick showed an aptitude for drawing. At age eleven, with an older brother, he moved from his rural hometown to Kiev, where he received training at the Kiev Art Institute. In 1906, Lozowick came to the United States, joining a brother in New Jersey. While in high school, and for several years afterwards, Lozowick studied at the National Academy of Design under Leon Kroll, George Willloughby Maynard, Ivan Olinsky, and Douglas Volk. He graduated from Ohio State University in 1918 with a degree in art.
After a year's stint in the medical corps of the U.S. Army, Lozowick headed to Paris in the fall of 1920, where he studied French at the Sorbonne. By early 1922, he had settled in Berlin and was enrolled at the Friedrick Wilhelms Universität. During this time, Lozowick began painting seriously, made his first lithographs, and established friendships with many Russian artists in Germany, including El Lissitsky; he also made a trip to Moscow, where he met a number of leading Russian artists. While living in Berlin, Lozowick had his first solo show at K. E. Twardy Book Shop in 1922, and a second at the Gallerie Alfred Heller in the following year.
Lozowick worked mainly as a graphic artist and supplemented his income with commercial work. In addition, he taught art history and lithography classes, lectured, and wrote about art. During the Depression he worked with the Public Works of Art Project, New York City, for a brief time in 1934. Between 1935 and 1940, he was employed by the Graphic Arts Division of the Works Progress Administration.
Lozowick taught art history at the Educational Alliance Art School, New York City, for a semester prior to going to Europe, and for extended periods afterwards. He was a lithography instructor at the John Reed Club School of Art and the American Artists School, and over the years taught a number of private pupils. In 1924, Lozowick delivered lectures on modern Russian art for the Société Anonyme, and lectured regularly on a variety of art topics to a many other groups. Eventually he was represented by a speakers' bureau that arranged several lecture tours.
Russian art, art and artists in the Soviet Union, and Jewish art were among the topics that particularly interested Lozowick. He wrote extensively on these subjects and others, publishing many articles and reviews. While living in Berlin, he wrote for Broom and contributed translations to that periodical. Two major manuscripts, a book about William Gropper and a memoir titled Survivor From a Dead Age, appeared posthumously. In addition, he was a founder of the New Masses, a contributing editor, and eventually its art editor.
One of the organizers of the John Reed Club in 1929 and a charter member, Lozowick became its Executive Secretary in 1931 and remained active throughout the club's five-year existence. In 1935, Lozowick participated in organizing the first American Artists' Congress, became the group's Executive Secretary, and for several years was an extremely active member of the New York chapter.
Throughout his long career, Louis Lozowick exhibited widely in local and national exhibitions. He won a number of awards and was invited to spend several summers in residence at the Yaddo artists' colony.