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 Irving Amen  (1918 - 2011)

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Lived/Active: New York/Florida      Known for: woodcuts, religous theme and figure painting, stained glass

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Irving Amen (b. 1918-d. 2011)

Born in New York City, he began drawing at the young age of four.  By the time he was fourteen years old, he won a scholarship to the Pratt Institute. He emulated Michelangelo's masterpieces and spent years perfecting his own unique style.

From 1942 to 1945 he served with the Armed Forces. He headed a mural project and executed murals in the United States and Belgium.

He had his first exhibition was at the New School for Social Research in New York and his second at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington in 1949.

Amen studied in Paris in 1950. Upon his return to the United States, he had one man shows in New York and Washington DC.

In 1953, Amen traveled throughout Italy. This resulted in a series of eleven woodcuts, eight etchings and a number of oil paintings.  One of these woodcuts, Piazza San Marco #4 and its four woodblocks constitute a permanent exhibit of block printing in color at the Smithsonian Institution.

Travel in Israel, Greece and Turkey in 1960 led to a retrospective show in Jerusalem.  His art is widely owned and loved.  Irving Amen has taught at Pratt Institute and at the University of Notre Dame.

Commissions include a Peace Medal in honor of the Vietnam War and 12 stained glass windows for the Agudas Achim Synagogue in Ohio.

He is listed in Mantle Fielding Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors and Engravers and the Dictionary of Contemporary American Artists by Paul Cummings.

Some of the museums that represent his art are:
Albertina Museum – Vienna
Baltimore Museum of Art – Maryland
Bezalel National Museum – Jerusalem
Corcoran Gallery of Art – Washington, DC
Fogg Art Museum – Massachusetts
Jewish Museum – New York
Metropolitan Museum of Art – New York
Boston Museum of Fine Arts – Massachusetts
Museum of Modern Art – New York
Philadelphia Museum of Art – Pennsylvania
Smithsonian Institution – Washington, DC
Statische Museum – Germany
Victoria and Albert Museum – England

Sources include:
www.irvingamen.com/
Seaside Art Gallery

Added note:
Irving Amen passed away on November 21, 2011.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Known for his oil paintings, etchings and woodcuts, Irving Amen was born in New York City, worked there for some years, and then moved to Boca Raton, Florida.

He studied at the Pratt Institute from 1932 to 1939 and also studied in Paris and in Italy. He created a Peace Medal commemorating the end of the Viet Nam war and for a synagogue in Columbus, Ohio, designed a stained glass window of the Twelve Tribes of Israel.

He has been an instructor of art at Pratt Institute and at Notre Dame University in South Bend, Indiana. Among his memberships are the Society of American Graphic Artists, the International Society of Wood Engravers, and Audubon Artists.

Source: "Who's Who in American Art", 1997-1998

Biography from Boca Raton Museum of Art:
Irving Amen (American, born New York City 1918- )

A twentieth century sculptor, painter, etcher, silk-screen and woodcut artist, at the age of fourteen, Irving Amen won a scholarship to Pratt Institute, where he studied from 1932 to 1939.  Amen also studied at the Art Students League in New York and the Academy Grande Chaumiere in Paris.  He had his first exhibition in New York at the New School for Social Research in the 1940s, and in 1949, Amens was given a one-man exhibition at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington.  Travels throughout Israel, Greece and Turkey in 1960 led to a retrospective show at the Artists House in Jerusalem

In the early 1960s, Amen taught sculpture and printmaking classes at the Pratt Institute (1961) and at Notre Dame University, South Bend, Indiana (1962).  During the 1960s through 1980s, Amen’s work was exhibited with the Society of American Graphic Artists, the Library of Congress and the National Academy of Design.  Among his commissions were a Peace Medal commemorating the end of the Viet Nam war and for a synagogue in Columbus, Ohio, designed a stained glass window of the Twelve Tribes of Israel.

Amen’s work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Bibliotheque Royale, Brussels, the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris.

Source:
Boca Raton Museum of Art
Catalina Torres (Intern)

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