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 Samuel Byer  (1886 - 1966)

About: Samuel Byer


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Lived/Active: Illinois / Poland      Known for: Hebraic themed painting, portraits and Biblical figures

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BIOGRAPHY for Samuel Byer
1886 (Warsaw, Poland)
1966 (Chicago, Illinois)

Illinois / Poland

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Hebraic themed painting, portraits and Biblical figures

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Mr. Sam Byer was born in Warsaw, Poland, in 1886. He came to Chicago when he was twenty years old, and studied at Hull House Art School* under Enella Benedict for many years. Mr. Byer was also a student at the Chicago Art Institute* and the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts*.

In 1930, he was awarded the Worcester Prize in an exhibit with a group of the Chicago Etching Society.*

His paintings have been represented in many exhibits including the Chicago shows at the Chicago Art Institute. Many of his works are Hebraic in theme, attributed to his early childhood education in Hebrew school. Such titles as The End of the Sabbath, A Lesson in Talmud, and Capores bring to mind those cherished stories of Biblical days. His portrait of La Jeuf (The Jewess) was posed by the operatic star, Rosa Raisa.

Although Mr. Byer has painted in several media, he seems to derive more satisfaction from oil painting. His greatest achievements have been in his portraits and illustrated Biblical stories. Perhaps the most outstanding characteristics of his work are his ability in the handling of color, and his feeling for line and form. One cannot help find sincerity and emotional appeal in his paintings.

Written by Michael Gamboney, Head, Hull House Art School

Submitted by Roberta Kramer, Art Appraiser, Chicago. Her source is the daughter-in-law of the artist.

* For more in-depth information about terms marked with an asterisk in this biography and others, see Glossary at

** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at

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