Known for his portraits, Robert Philipp studied at the Art Students League and at the National Academy of Design. Beginning in the 1930s he won many prizes for his work, including for his café scenes and nudes, which were compared stylistically to those of Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Edgar Degas. Philipp’s painting Olympia won the Logan prize at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1936, and was then purchased by J. Paul Getty. In the 1940s, he received commissions to paint Hollywood stars as well as scenes from the film The Long Voyage Home, directed by John Ford. He taught at the Art Students League for over thirty years. His work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Dallas Museum of Art, among others.