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September 15, 2017 to January 21, 2018

New York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street)
New York, NY 10024

New York Historical Society

Arthur Szyk: Soldier in Art

Image: Arthur Szyk (1894−1951). Arsenal of Democracy, also known as Democracy at Work, 1942. Watercolor and gouache on paper. Property of a Private Collector, New York

Ominous threats filled the years around World War II—Nazism, the escalating plight of European Jews, Fascism, Japanese militarism, and racism. Arthur Szyk, the great 20th-century activist in art, confronted the turbulent, hate-filled period with forceful artistic depictions caricaturing Hitler, Mussolini, and Hirohito as the evil architects of their regimes’ destructive and inhumane policies. Arthur Szyk: Soldier in Art explores the activism of the Polish-born artist through more than 40 politically incisive works that underscore Szyk’s role as a kind of “one man army” fighting odious policies and protagonists and advocating civil and human rights. Arthur Szyk: Soldier in Art is curated by Debra Schmidt Bach, curator of decorative arts, with Irvin Ungar, project adviser. The book, Arthur Szyk: Soldier in Art, is available from the NYHistory Store.