Louis Schanker

Abstract Artist
Born 1903

Louis Schanker was an American abstract artist born in 1903. He grew up in an orthodox Jewish environment in the Bronx, New York. His parents were of Romanian descent. At an early age he had an interest in both art and music He took art courses at Cooper Union, The Educational Alliance and The Art Students League with Barnett Newman, Mark Rothko and Milton Avery amongst others. During this time he shared a coldwater studio with the Soyer brothers, Chaim Gross and Adolph Gottlieb.… Read More

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News + Updates

Browse recent news and stories about Louis Schanker.

  • Critic's Notebook; On A Treasure Hunt For Art Stashed Among The Books
    NYTimes - Apr 29, 2005
  • Art Reviews; Inspiration From Motion, Nature And Abstraction
    NYTimes - Dec 06, 1998
  • Treetops: An Aura Of Glamour, A Trail Of Tragedies
    NYTimes - May 18, 1997
  • Art In Review
    NYTimes - Apr 25, 1997


Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Louis Schanker.


1903 Birth Born in 1903.


1920 17 Years Old In 1920 he traveled across the country. … Read More


1924 21 Years Old Around 1924 he returned to New York, leased another studio and resumed his friendships and artwork. … Read More


1933 30 Years Old He had his first show in 1933 at the Contemporary Arts Gallery and first exhibited at the Whitney Museum in 1936. … Read More
1935 32 Years Old Schanker was a radical among radicals. His "conglomerations of color-patches, among other things", wrote the sympathetic art critic Emily Genauer in 1935, "are bound to alienate no small part of the gallery-going public." … Read More
1937 34 Years Old By 1937, even the often hostile New York Times art critic Edward Alden Jewell softened to the artist. … Read More
1938 35 Years Old In 1938, Art News declared that "Louis Schanker's delightful Street Scene From My Window calls forth admiration for its delicacy of color and kaleidoscopic forms in plane geometry." … Read More


1949 46 Years Old Schanker moved into teaching, first at the New School for Social Research and then, from 1949 until his retirement, at Bard College. … Read More


1960 57 Years Old He married stage actress and singer Libby Holman on December 27, 1960. … Read More


1978 75 Years Old He continued to be an active part of the New York art scene with many group and solo exhibitions including two shows (1943 and 1974) at the Brooklyn Museum and a 1978 retrospective at the Associated American Artists.
1981 78 Years Old Just a few blocks from the hospital where he died in 1981 the Martin Diamond Gallery was holding a major show of his oils, sculpture and prints and his work was on exhibit at the Whitney Museum of American Art. … Read More
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