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Postcard of a hunting tapestry miniature by Arthur Szyk inscribed to a friend

Object | Accession Number: 2013.514.6

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    Postcard of a hunting tapestry miniature by Arthur Szyk inscribed to a friend


    Brief Narrative
    French picture postcard of a miniature painting by Arthur Szyk inscribed to his friend Ze’ev (Vladimir) Jabotinsky in 1928. It depicts a medieval tapestry, La Battue aux Sangliers dans le Quercy [Hunting boars in Quercy]. Szyk was a Polish-born Jewish artist renowned for his miniatures, illuminations, and illustrations. Vladimir Jabotinsky (1880-1940) was the leader of the Revisionist Zionist movement, and a founder of Haganah and the Betar youth movement. In 1919, Szyk, originally from Łódź, Poland, moved to Paris where he met Jabotinsky. After the German invasion of Poland in September 1939, Szyk's work focused on anti-Nazi political cartoons. In 1940, he went to the US where he became a leading anti-Fascist editorial caricaturist and brought attention to the mass murder of Europe’s Jews by Nazi Germany.
    use:  1928
    use: Paris (France)
    publication: Paris (France)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, The Abraham and Ruth Goldfarb Family Acquisition Fund
    back, top, orange ink : Carte Postal
    back, top left corner, orange ink : Arthur Szyk
    back, top left corner, inside circular logo, orange ink : EDITIONS DE LA MINIATURE MODERNE. PARIS. [Editions of Modern Miniatures]
    back, left, orange ink : “La battue aux sangliers dans le Quercy”. / (XVe siècle) Projet de tapisserie pour la Manufacture / des Gobelins. (Collection A. de Monzie. Paris). [“Hunting boars in Quercy”. (15th Century) Tapestry design of the Gobelins factory.]
    back, center, orange ink : 815
    Subject: Arthur Szyk
    Artist: Arthur Szyk
    Publisher: Editions de la Miniature Moderne
    Arthur Szyk (1894-1951) was born to Jewish parents, Solomon and Eugenia Szyk in Łódź, Poland, which at the time was part of the Russian Empire. He had his first public art exhibition at age 15, and then went to Paris, France, for formal art training at the Academie Julian. He visited Palestine in 1914 with a group of Polish-Jewish artists and studied Muslim art. Upon his return, he was conscripted into the Russian Army and served in World War I. He married Julia Liekerman in 1916, and they had a son, George, in 1917. In 1918, Poland regained independence, but continued to fight a series of regional wars to secure its boundaries. Between 1919 and 1920, during Poland's war against the Soviet Bolsheviks, Syzk served as a cavalry officer and artistic director of the Department of Propaganda for the Polish Army in Łódź. In 1921, he and his family moved to Paris where his daughter, Alexandra was born the following year.

    Szyk was well known for his illuminations and book illustrations, in a style reminiscent of Persian miniatures. He worked on several significant projects in France, including illustrating the Statute of Kalisz, the Haggadah, and a series of watercolors on the American Revolutionary War. The themes of his most admired works, democracy and Judaism, were already well established, earning him both fame and significant commissions. In 1934, Szyk traveled to the United States for exhibitions of his work and to receive the George Washington Bicentennial Medal, awarded by the US Congress. He resided in England from 1937-1940 to supervise the publication of the Haggadah. In 1939, following Germany's invasion of Poland, he focused on producing anti-Nazi editorial cartoons published in many Western newspapers and magazines. During the German occupation of Poland, his 70 year old mother, Eugenia, and her Polish companion were forced to live in the Łódź ghetto. In 1943, they were transported to Majdanek concentration camp and killed.

    In late 1940, Szyk immigrated to the United States with his family. He became a leading anti-Fascist political caricaturist as well as an advocate for Jewish rescue. In addition to his widely published satirical art, Szyk devoted a great deal of time and energy to the Emergency Committee to Save the Jewish People of Europe, and pushed for the establishment of an independent Jewish state in Palestine. Szyk received his US citizenship in 1948. In 1951, he was investigated by the United States House Un-American Activities Committee as a suspected Communist. His son, speaking on his behalf, declared his non-affiliation with any Communist organization. Later that year, on September 13, Szyk suffered a heart attack and died at age 57.

    Physical Details

    French Russian
    Information Forms
    Physical Description
    Picture postcard with a colorful reproduction of a painting of a medieval tapestry depicting a brown boar being chased by 2 robed men on horseback. Heading the hunt are a man blowing a horn, one drawing his sword, and another leading 4 leashed dogs. The back has a vertical line separating 2 equal sections: the right has spaces for the stamp and address; the left has a space for writing a message, as well as publishing information in French. There is a personal inscription in Russian on the front below the image.
    overall: Height: 3.875 inches (9.843 cm) | Width: 5.625 inches (14.288 cm)
    overall : paper, ink
    front, bottom, Russian cursive, black ink : V.E. Zhabotinskomu ot' ego druga Shika. Parizha 1928. [To V.E. Jabotinsky from his friend Szyk. Paris 1928.]

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    No restrictions on access
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    The postcard was acquired by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2013.
    Funding Note
    The acquisition of this collection was made possible by The Abraham and Ruth Goldfarb Family Acquisition Fund.
    The cataloging of this artifact has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2022-09-06 16:51:32
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