Leah Schwartz: the life of a woman who managed to keep painting
Mill valley: Strawberry Press, 1990. First Edition. Oblong quarto (23cm x 29cm); cloth boards; dustjacket; 294p. Inscribed by the artist on front endpaper to artist Bernarda Bryson Shahn: "Dear Bernarda / Congratulations on your retrospective! this book is the result of my retrospective last year / with love Leah Dubin Schwartz," undated but obviously contemporary. Fine copy in fine dustwrapper. From the library of Ben and Bernarda Bryson Shahn, with estate label tipped on to front pastedown. Nicely illustrated monograph covering the entirety of this Bay Area artist's career, from the social realism of her 1940s & 50s paintings (very reminiscent of Ben Shahn's early style) to the southwest-tinged hyperrealism of her late work. Schwartz's family, like the Shahns, were among the charter residents of Jersey Homesteads (later Roosevelt) New Jersey. Schwartz studied art in Ben Shahn's living room as a teenager, and spent some time as an assistant on his Roosevelt mural project. The autobiographical portion of this book includes the author's recipe for "Ben Shahn's Fegato Italiano."