Artist biography

Elsa Fraenkel 1892-1975

Sculptor of portrait busts and statuettes, née Rotschild. Born at Bensheim, Germany; the family moved to Heidelberg shortly afterwards. Took drawing lessons in Brussels at 16. Attended history of art lectures at Heidelberg University. Studied at Karlsruhe Academy under Friedrich Fehr (drawing) and Hermann Foehri (sculpture), and subsequently in Paris under the sculptor Jacques Loutchansky. Further art studies in Italy, Spain, Portugal, Africa and India. Lived in Paris 1933-5, and was influenced by the portraits of Despiau and by the Chaldean art in the Louvre; Brancusi and Mondrian were among her friends. Settled in England in 1935 and became a British subject in 1947. Taught art at evening institutes and was active as an artist until 1969. Lived in Woodford Green, Essex until 1970, but spent her last years in India. Died in Bangalore.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.224