A notable figure in American Modernism, Abraham Walkowitz brought aspects of French Post-Impressionism and Fauvism to his work. He immigrated to New York City from Russia as a child and showed an early interest in drawing. He later studied etching at the National Academy of Design before traveling to Europe where he attended the Académie Julian in Paris. While in France, Walkowitz met the American cubist painter Max Weber and moved in the circles of many prolific artists, including Auguste Rodin and Henri Matisse. In fact, it was in Rodin’s studio that Walkowitz first met the American dancer, Isadora Duncan, who became the subject of many of his portraits. His expressive depictions of the model capture her elegant movement and energy.
Walkowitz returned to New York in 1907 and exhibited at Julius Haa’s gallery the following year. He later met Alfred Stieglitz and exhibited at his well-known 291 Gallery in Manhattan many times, as well as at the Armory Show of 1913 and Forum Exhibition of 1916. Walkowitz’s work is characterized by flat simplified forms and expressive lines, and he painted figures, landscapes, and city scenes. Today, his work is found in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the J. Paul Getty Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.