"Elderly Jewish Man with Basket," 1905, etching by William Auerbach-Levy. There is an inscription in Hebrew across the top of the etching, "Alef, lamed, (space), cheit, shin, lamed, yod, kaf, nun, yod, (space), lamed, ayin, cheit, zayin, qof, nun, hay." This possibly translates: "Do not cast me away in old age." A gallery label found with the print notes that this is a signed artist's proof.
Label from The Collector's Eye (2014):
Elderly Jewish Man with Basket, 1905
William M. Auerbach–Levy (1889–1964), Russian-American
Max. B. and Lalla B. Arnstein Collection, 1962.20.26
Though he studied abroad, Auerbach-Levy spent most of his life in New York City, creating illustrations for newspapers and magazines like The New Yorker, and eventually becoming one of the most popular caricaturists in the US.
He also created intimate portraits of fellow Jews and Russian immigrants, especially rabbis and scholars, a large community of which populated his childhood neighborhood of the Lower East Side. At the top of this etching of an elderly Jewish man carrying a basket, Psalm 71:9 is written in Hebrew: “Cast me not off in the time of old age; forsake me not when my strength fails.”
|Title||Elderly Jewish Man with Basket|
|Role of Creator||Artist|
|Creator||Auerbach-Levy, William M.|
|Technique||etching | intaglio|
|Dimensions||H-14 W-9.062 inches|
|Credit line||Max B. and Lalla B. Arnstein Collection|