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Max Arthur Cohn


“Ferryboat” by Max Cohn
oil on canvas, 1936, signed lower left, framed

Max Arthur Cohn was born in London, England on February 3, 1903, and died in New York City in 1998. One of his earliest encounters with art occurred in his first job, working in a silkscreen studio in New York City at the age of 17. From 1925-1927, Cohn studied at the Art Students League, under Boardman Robinson, and under the Ashcan school artist John Sloan. Later in 1927, Cohn traveled to Europe to study at the Academie Colarossi in Paris, France. Cohn had numerous one-man shows, his first in 1929 at the New York Civic Club, and his last in 1989 at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Art History Gallery. In between, his one-man shows include: the New School for Social Research, ACA Gallery, Delphic Studios, Couturier Galleries in Stamford, CT, Lucinda Galleries in New Jersey, and Jeanette Hendler Fine Art in NYC.

He has works in permanent collections at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Philadelphia Museum, and the Chicago Art Institute, among others. Cohn was a part of the WPA Easel project, where he earned $26 each week, while producing one work each week. Cohn is credited with teaching Andy Warhol the silkscreen process, as well as publishing the definitive book on silk screening. This book is titled, Silk Screen Techniques by J.I.Biegeleisen and Max Arthur Cohn and was published by Dover Craft Books in 1958. Cohn and Biegeleisen also published a book titled Silk Screen Stenciling as a Fine Art. These books included the necessary materials, methods, and step-by-step instructions for producing various types of silk screens.

He was a life member of the Art Students League, a founding member of the National Serigraph Society and the Delaware Valley Artists Association, and an executive board member of the New York WPA Artists Association. Both he and his wife, Sara Cohn, were amongst the original officers of the NYC WPA Artists Association, which existed for many decades and ran many exhibitions of WPA Artists. They were also officers of the organization from its inception until both Cohns died. Their residence in the Chelsea section of NYC, was the organizations primary meeting location. They hosted all the artists of the organization and participated in planning the many exhibitions that were held on behalf of the NYC WPA Artists Association.

His work is represented in the gallery of Jeanette Hendler Fine Art, 55 East 87th St., New York, NY 10128, Apt. 15E (phone number: 212 860-2555).