Bernard Perlin, an American artist best known for his 1948 painting Orthodox Boys, died on Jan. 14 at age 95. Although the artist has remained low-key these past few years, Perlin's career as an artist stretches over a period of seven decades, which he spent exploring a multitude of subjects and places.
Perlin started off working for the government, creating propaganda posters to help gain support for fighting in World War II. Eventually, he was sent overseas as an artist and reporter for Life and Fortune magazines. After witnessing the horrors of war firsthand, Perlin returned the the United States more socially aware, finding many similarities between war-torn cities and the abandoned lots and gritty lifestyle of his native country's cities. It was around this time Perlin began painting what Art News calls "romantic realist" works. His most well-known piece Orthodox Boys, pictured above, was first shown at Knoedler & Company—and now it sits inside Tate Gallery in London.
On Feb. 28, the Smithsonian American Art Museum will open "Modern American Realism: The Sara Roby Foundation Collection," which will include works by Perlin and his teacher Ben Shahn. You can also go on the artist's website to view some of his beautiful paintings.
While we'll miss the artist dearly, we're also thankful for all that Perlin has contributed to the art world.