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E.M. Lilien

Ephraim Moses Lilien (1874-1925) was an art nouveau painter and photographer particularly noted for his art on Jewish and Zionist themes. He is sometimes called the "first Zionist artist." [1]



Ephraim Moses Lilien (Maurycy Lilien) was born in Drohobycz (Galicia). In 1889-1893 Lilien learned painting and graphic techniques at the Academy of Arts in Kraków. He studied under Polish painter Jan Matejko from 1890 to 1892. As a member of the Zionist Movement, Lilien traveled to Palestine several times between 1906 and 1918.[2] He accompanied Boris Schatz to Jerusalem to help establish the Bezalel Art School.[3]

Artistic career

Portrait of Theodor Herzl

Lilien is known for his famous photographic portrait of Theodor Herzl. He often used Herzl as a model, considering his features a perfect representation of the "New Jew." [4] In 1896, he received an award for photography from the avantgarde magazine Jugend. Lilien illustrated several books. In 1923, an exhibition of his work opened in New York. [5]

Lilien's illustrated books include Juda (1900), Biblically-themes poetry by Lilien's Christian friend, Börries Freiherr von Münchausen, and Lieder des Ghetto (Songs of the Ghetto) (1903), Yiddish poems by Morris Rosenfeld translated into German.

Death and commemoration

Lilien died in Badenweiler, Germany in 1925. A street in the Nayot neighborhood of Jerusalem is named for him.



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