Artist Detail

Ernst Neumann (Hungary/Canada 1907-1955)

Ernst NEUMANN, 1907-1955

Born in Budapest, Hungary, he came to Canada with his Austrian parents in 1912 at the age of five. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and life classes of the Royal Canadian Academy (at the Art Association of Montreal). He entered a litho­graphy shop as an apprentice and during this period developed a personal interest in lithography, woodcuts, and other printed forms of the graphic arts. He was also a sculptor of note. He was inspired by the masters including Sir Joshua Reynolds, Rembrandt, Renoir, van Gogh and others. Early in his career Neumann became known for his fine lithographs, etchings and woodcuts. In the fall of 1936 he shared a studio with Goodridge Roberts and they founded the Roberts-Neumann School of Art. They had been students at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts around 1924. Viewing his work in 1939 The Montreal Standard noted “Etchings, lithographs and woodcuts in the Art Association print room make it clear that Ernst Neumann is a thoroughly metropolitan artist. He gets his pictures in the city streets and alleys and in the studio – nudes and painters and onlookers in the studio, down-and-outs on park benches or living on the grass of Fletcher’s Field, lawyers gathered outside the courts, hymn-singers on the street corner, beggars on the pavement, urchins playing in back lanes – this is the stuff that appeals to his sharp eye, for registra­tion by a skilled hand. He is at his best, I feel, in the detail of character, whether it be in a clump of old buildings or in the folds of a face or an old garment.” Neumann exhibited his work at a number of places over the years including the following: Art Assoc. of Montreal/Museum of Fine Arts (Print Rm., 1939, Con­temp. Art Room, 1950; Gal. XII, 1952); Arts Club of Montreal (1941, 1945); Temple Emanu – El, Mtl. (1942, 1943); Cercle Universitaire, Mtl. (1951); Henry Morgan Store, Mtl. (1953); Snowdon Y.M.-Y.W.H.A. (1954). He was delegated in 1954 by the Canadian Arts Council to attend the UNESCO sponsored congress which met in the Cini Palace on the Isle of St. Giorgio near Venice. He was awarded a government overseas fellowship by the Royal Society of Canada in 1955 to study in France and while at Venice died of a heart attack in his 48th year. Several showings of his work took place after his death: Art Gallery of Hamilton (1958), Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (1958), UNB Art Centre (1959) all sponsored by the National Gallery of Canada.

   The Gazette, Mtl., P.Q., 22 April, 1939 “Ernst Neumann Shows Etchings and Lithos”
   The Montreal Standard, P.Q., Apr. 29, 1939 “Black and White”
   Saturday Night, Tor., Ont., Jan. 27, 1940 “Satire and a Touch of Sentiment”
   The Gazette, Mtl., P.Q., Feb. 22, 1941 “Ernst Neumann Shows Work at the Arts Club”
   Ibid, April 28, 1945 “Ernst Neumann Holds Exhibit at Arts Club”
   The Montreal Standard, P.Q., Mar. 4, 1950 “Self Portrait”
   Ibid, Dec. 2, 1950 “An Artist Looks At The Law”
   The Gazette, Mtl., P.Q., 8 Dec., 1951 “Ernst Neumann Shows Portraits and Scenes”
   Ibid, Oct. 18, 1952 “Three Artists Showing At Fine Arts Museum”
   The Montreal Star, P.Q., Oct. 25, 1952 “Art Notes – Three Types Of Paintings Now On View” by Robert Ayre
   Le Petit Journal, Mtl., P.Q., Oct. 11, 1953 “Le peintre Ernst Neumann a reconstruit Mont­réal” par Paul Gladu
   The Montreal Star, P.Q., Feb. 27, 1954 “Art Notes – Two Exhibitions: Scott, Neumann” by Robert Ayre
   Ibid, Nov. 20, 1954 “Canada’s Art Attitude Attacked by Delegate”
   Weekend Magazine, Mtl., P.Q., 17 Sept., 1955 “Danger! Artist At Work” Photos by Louis Jaques
   The Hamilton Spectator, Ont., 2 Oct., 1958 “Ernst Neumann Paintings Highlight Art Gal­lery’s First Show Of Season” by Ian Vorres
   The Gazette, Mtl., 20 Dec., 1958 “Ernst Neumann’s Art In Retrospect”
   Le Devoir, Mtl., Dec. 24, 1958 “Formes et Couleurs – A la mémoire d’Ernst Neumann” par René Chicoine
   Daily Gleaner, Fred., N.B., Jan. 19, 1959 “Art Exhibition at UNB Said Interesting”
   Canadian Jewish Congress Bulletin, February, 1959
   The Montreal Star, P.Q., Oct. 30, 1968 “The Art Scene – Retrospective of Boultbee, Neu­mann” by Robert Ayre
   NGC Info. Form rec’d May 4, 1932
   Canadian Jewish Weekly, Tor., Ont., Mar. 28, 1959 “He Reaffirmed Humanity In Art” by Harry Mayerovitch
   Books, magazines and catalogues
   Canadian Art, Vol. 7, No. 2, 1949-50 “Ernst Neumann as a Painter” by Goodridge Ro­berts, P. 47-50
   Canadian Art by Graham McInnes, MacMillan, Tor., 1950, P. 95
   Canadian Drawings and Prints by Paul Duval, 1952, Burns & MacEachern, Tor., 1952, Plate 46
   The National Gallery of Canada Catalogue, Vol. 3 by R.H. Hubbard, Ott., 1960, P. 233
   Sir George Williams University Collection of Art by Edwy F. Cooke, Mtl., 1967, P. 146
   A Retrospective Exhibition of Goodridge Roberts, catalogue by James Borcoman, NGC/Queen’s Printer, 1969 (Chronology, P. 46)

Colin S. MacDonald

A Dictionary of Canadian Artists, volumes 1-8 by Colin S. MacDonald, and volume 9 (online only), by Anne Newlands and Judith Parker

National Gallery of Canada / Musée des beaux-arts du Canada

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Ernst Neumann. (Canadian 1907 – 1956)

The Accused


10 ½” x 8 ½”

Signed and dated (1949) in the plate

Titled and signed in pencil

Ernst Neumann. (Canadian 1907 – 1956) The Accused accused accused-sig

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