Samuel Brecher Biography

Samuel Brecher




Painter and educator Samuel Becher was born in 1897 in Boryslaw, then a part of Austria and now a part of Poland. His family immigrated to the United States in 1910, settling in New York. Becher graduated from Cooper Union in 1921 and then continued his studies at the National Academy of Design (1921 - 1924) and provately with Charles W. Hawthorne in Provincetown, Massachusetts. He established himself as a painter of cityscapes and coastal Maine and Cape Cod scenes before turning his attention to clowns, in the vein of Cortland Butterfield, Walter Kuhn and Georges Rouault. A show of clown paintings by Becher, Kuhn, Rouault, Toulouse-Lautrec, and Picasso was shown in San Francisco in 1942.

In addition to his art career he taught at the WPA from 1933 - '38, and from 1946 until his retirement in 1974 he taught drawing and painting at the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts. He was a member of the Audubon Artists, Allied Artists, National Society of Casein Painter, and the New Jersey Painters and Sculptors Society. Becher was represented by the Kraushaar Gallery, the ACA Gllery, the Hudson walker Gallery, and the Merrill Gallery, among others. His work can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY), the Walker Art Center (MN), the Newark Museum of Art (NJ), Florida Southern College (FL); Tel Aviv Museum and Ein Harod Museum, Israel.

Samuel Becher died in New York in 1982.

NAD, 1924, 1927, 1931, 1936, 1937, 1945, 1946; AFA Traveling Exhib., 1931, 1944; ACA Gal., 1935 (solo); Dayton AI, 1936; AIC, 1936, 1938; PAFA, 1936, 1943; WFNY, 1939; GGE, 1939; CM, 1939; CI, 1941(Directions in American Painting), 1944; SFMA, 1942 (Sawdust and Spangles); Salons of Am.; Walker Art Center, 1943; VFMA, 1944 (4th Biennial Exhib. Contemporay Am. Paintings); BM, 1944; Hudson Walker Gal., 1938, 1940 (solo); Kraushaar Gal., 1942, 1944 (solo); American Art Today, NYWF, 1939; Corcoran Gal., 1953 (23rd Biennial Exhib.); SC, 1950 (first prize in oil painting);14th Ann. Audubon Exhib., 1956 (prize in oil painting); 8th Ann. Exhib. Nat. Soc. Casein Painters, 1962 (first prize); Winston Gallery, Fort Lee, NJ, 1970s; NYC WPA Exhib., Parsons School Design, 1977.

WW73; Charles Z. Offin, Cape Cod on Canvas," Pictures on Exhib (Jan.,1942); Zelda Ormont, "Samuel Brecher, Artist," Caravan (Nov.,1946); Howard Devree, "Portrait of Staten Island," New York Times Magazine, Jan. 13, 1957; WW47; New York City WPA Art, 12 (w/repros.)