Find, Learn, Price Art
Enjoy the comprehensive art database we've compiled since 1987
Membership Details
Images, sales charts, bios, signatures, 30 artist Alerts and more ...
Art auction records:  Millions of references for pricing research
Or, register for Free Alerts
To track 10 artists.

Already a member?  Sign in here

Willy Eisenschitz

 (1889 - 1974)
Willy Eisenschitz was active/lived in France, Austria.  Willy Eisenschitz is known for landscape, interiors, portraits and still-life painting.

Willy Eisenschitz

Biography from Richard Rhoda Fine Art

Biography photo for Willy Eisenschitz
Willy Eisenschitz  (Vienna, 1889 - Paris, 1974)  began his studies at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts in 1910, but in 1912 moved  to Paris to continue his education at the Academy de la Grande Chaumiere*.  His exposure to the French Impressionists* Gauguin and Cezanne led to an infatuation that lasted the rest of Eisenschitz's life. 

If Central Europe had been his main source of inspiration as an emerging painter, Paris, the canal Saint-Martin and the south of France were soon to build the basis of his future inspiration.  An outstanding colorist*, Eisenschitz painted landscapes, interiors, portraits and still-lifes.  Landscaper above all, he was little influenced by the revolutionary pictorial movements around in Paris at the time, but he did absorb some of the post-war Cubism* by using some geometrized shapes.

In 1913 he married his fellow student Claire Bertrand, and in 1914 participated in an exhibition at the Vienna Secession*.  Later that year he was incarcerated in an internment camp near Angers.  In 1915 and 1916, his wife gave birth to a daughter and a son in the camp.  In 1917, complications after contracting tuberculosis required a convalescence in Switzerland, but in 1920 Eisenschitz was able to return to Paris and take a studio and apartment on Rue de Tournon.

From 1921, Eisenschitz spent the summer in Provence and traveled the Cote d' Azure and Italian Riviera.  In his work, Eisenschitz captured the mood and the light of the south and created a unique expression of its brilliance, color and depth.

In 1923 he had a relapse of tuberculosis. 1925 marked the beginning of several long stays in the French spa town of Dieulefit followed in 1927 by a move to Les Minimes near Toulon.  By 1931, severe arthritis in his right shoulder required Eisenschitz to work more and more with watercolor.  In 1935, Eisenschitz was naturalized French.

He exhibited in Paris, Vienna, London, Lausanne, Honolulu, and Toulon.  Eisenschitz received the gold medal at the Universal Exhibition of 1937 in Paris. The following year, he traveled around the British Isles and then on to Spain.  He illustrated three books by Jean Giono: The True Riches, The Death of Wheat, Entrance of Spring.  He also illustrated books by Aldous Huxley.

At the beginning of  the Second World War, Eisenschitz returned to Provence where intellectual refugees had gathered.  In 1943, after a police interrogation in Les Minimes, Eisenschitz escaped with his family to the mountain village of Dieulefit and began painting under the pseudonym "Villiers". The following year, his son David, who had enrolled in the Resistance, was arrested and deported and Eisenschitz returned to Toulon. From 1951 he traveled to Ibiza, Spain and lived alternately in Paris and in Provence.

At the end of the war, Eisenschitz shared his time between excursions and his exhibitions in Paris, Toulon and Marseille.  He was systematically inspired by the environment around him.  He returned to Les Minimes in 1945 and in 1949 held an exhibition ,"A Family of Painters" at the Galerie Allard, with works by himself, his wife, Claire Bertrand and their daughter, Evelyn Marc.   From 1951 to 1959, he made several trips to Ibiza, in the Languedoc region of Sudan.  The Durand-Ruel Gallery* in Paris and the Museum of Toulon exhibited his work from that period.  A year before his death in 1974, a retrospective was organized at the House of the Culture of Amiens.

Sources: (Nadine Nieszawer, Marie Boyé, Paul Fogel
"Peintres Juifs à Paris 1905-1939 Ecole de Paris", Editons Denoel 2000),, German Wikipedia and Galerie

Works by Willy Eisenschitz are in the following museums and public collections:

British Museum, London British Museum, London
Bristol Art Gallery Bristol Art Gallery
Chateau-Musée de Cagnes-sur-Mer Chateau-Musee de Cagnes-sur-Mer
Academy of Arts, Honolulu Academy of Arts, Honolulu
Musée National d´Art Moderne au Centre Pompidou, Paris Musée National d'Art Moderne au Pompidou Center, Paris
Musée d´Art de la Ville de Paris Musée d'Art de la Ville de Paris
Musée des Beaux-Arts de d´Histoire naturelle de Valence Musee des Beaux-Arts de Valence d'Histoire naturelle de
Musée Cantini, Marseille Musée Cantini, Marseille
Musée Franco-Israelien, Dimona/Israel Musée Franco-Israeli Dimona-Israel
Musée Granet, Aix-en-Provence Musee Granet, Aix-en-Provence
Musée Marcel Sahut, Volvic Musée Marcel Sahut, Volvic
Musée de Toulon Musee de Toulon
Musée de Saint Pierre, Lyon Musée de Saint Pierre, Lyon
Musée de Picardie, Amiens Musée de Picardie, Amiens
Neue Galerie der Stadt Linz Neue Galerie der Stadt Linz
Österreichische Galerie im Belvedere, Wien Austrian Gallery Belvedere in Vienna
Rupertinum Graz Rupertinum Graz

Historical Exhibitions

1957: Musée de Toulon, retrospective of 60 works from 1926 to 1957
1999: Exhibition at the Museum Lentos (New Gallery) of Linz (Austria)
2001: Willy Eisenschitz Retrospective at the Musée d'Art de Toulon
2006 : (April-May): Exhibition of paintings, watercolors and drawings by Willy Eisenschitz and Victor Bourgeois, the Art Center Raymond Du Puy, Poet-Laval (Drôme)

* For more in-depth information about these terms and others, see Glossary

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

Share an image of the Artist

  Full access to biographies is
  free each Friday

About  Willy Eisenschitz

Born:  1889 - Vienna, Austria
Died:   1974 - Paris, France
Known for:  landscape, interiors, portraits and still-life painting