Soyer,three brothers, American painters, emigrated with their family from Russia in 1912. Two were twins, Raphael Soyer, 1899–1987, and Moses Soyer, 1899–1974, b. Borisoglebsk. They settled in New York City making its inhabitants the chief subject of their paintings. They concentrated on the depiction of the natural attitudes, thoughts, and gestures of individuals in the performance of habitual tasks. Raphael's subdued, realistic style expresses an intimate sympathy for people, as in Office Workers (Whitney Mus., New York City) or in his portraits, e.g., Mina (Metropolitan Mus.). Moses' figures are usually presented in higher-keyed color or sharper contrasts of black and white, as in The Old Worker (Phillips Memorial Gall., Washington, D.C.). Their younger brother, Isaac Soyer, 1907–81, b. Borisoglebsk, also specialized in everyday figure scenes. His Employment Agency (Whitney Mus., New York City) reveals the social realities of the depression years. The Soyers' concern with people and their environment places them within the tradition of American realism established by Winslow HomerHomer, Winslow,
1836–1910, American landscape, marine, and genre painter. Homer was born in Boston, where he later worked as a lithographer and illustrator. In 1861 he was sent to the Civil War battlefront as correspondent for Harper's Weekly,
..... Click the link for more information. , Thomas EakinsEakins, Thomas
, 1844–1916, American painter, photographer, and sculptor, b. Philadelphia, where he worked most of his life. Eakins is considered the foremost American portrait painter and one of the greatest artists of the 19th cent.
..... Click the link for more information. , and the EightEight, the,
group of American artists in New York City, formed in 1908 to exhibit paintings. They were men of widely different tendencies, held together mainly by their common opposition to academism.
..... Click the link for more information. .
See R. Soyer's memoirs, Self-Revealment (1969); biography by L. Goodrich (1972); S. Cole, Jr., ed., Fifty Years of Printmaking (1967); biography of Moses Soyer by B. Smith and C. Willard (1944).
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