Maxa Nordau was born to a middle class Parisian family. Her father, Max Nordau, was a physician and one of the founders of the International Zionist Organisation together with Theodor Herzl. She became an artist, studying oil painting, acrylic painting and sketching, before first exhibiting her work in 1924 in the official Salon in Strasbourg.
During World War II, she left France and moved to the United States, where she displayed her work in several exhibitions in New York. Whilst there she took the opportunity to continue studying painting at the New York City College. When she returned to Paris in 1946, Nordau continued painting and began presenting her work in private galleries.
Most of Nordau’s paintings are portraits, particularly of women. Nordau travelled many times, and visited Palestine, Egypt, Syria, Greece, Morocco and other countries. The influence from her many journeys to the Middle East and to other Arabic countries is evident in the characters in her paintings. The Orient fascinated Nordau, and she paints the Arab women in her paintings in a very vivid and colourful manner. Nordau wasn’t the only artist who had an interest in the Orient. This theme was very common amongst Jewish artists in the beginning of the 20th century, specifically amongst artists from Zionist families who had visited Palestine. Some of this group even left Europe and went to live and work in the growing Jewish state. When Nordau died in 1991, she left a large number of portraits and several illustrations. Although she was indeed French, Maxa Nordau is considered to be a part of what is called the ‘School of Paris’, a group of non-French artists, who worked in Paris before and during World War II.
2 sketches; 1 pencil and 1 conte pencil on paper. Mounted.
Stock ID: 89061