Richard Florsheim (1916–1979)
Richard Florsheim was born in Chicago in 1916. Primarily self-taught, he attended the University of Chicago before going to Europe to study the works of the great masters. When he returned to the United States at the outbreak of World War II, Florsheim had already gained European recognition -- the Musee du Jeu de Paume in Paris had purchased his painting, "Don Quixote," making him the youngest American recipient of this honor.
During his lifetime his works were featured in numerous exhibitions, including the Phillips Collection, Washington, D. C.; San Francico Museum of Art; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Art Institute of Chicago; Atlanta Museum and the Birmingham Museum of Modern Art. Mr. Florsheim died at the age of 63 in the fall of 1979. In the words of Jack Solomon, Jr., Chairman of Circle Fine Art, “It is an unfortunate loss not only for the art world, but for all of us to be deprived of someone as talented as Richard Florsheim. His works express the vitality of the man; his scenes were familiar settings, but he made them come to life. By his death, we lost an important artist and a great human being.” In his honor, the Fine Arts Work Center of Provincetown, Massachusetts, which he had helped found, established the Florsheim Memorial Fund to assist young artists.
Richard Florsheim was famous for his original lithographs, having pioneered in this medium. He created hundreds of editions over a 40-year period. “Low Tide” and “Metropolis” were Florsheim’s first serigraphs. Both works were completed in the spring and summer of 1979 and were the final graphic works created by Mr. Florsheim. Museum collections include the Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; National Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.; Victoria and Albert Museum, London and Bibliothéque Nationale, Paris.