The sitter, Ulla Goldstein, was the daughter of Harvard neurologist and psychiatrist Kurt Goldstein, a cousin of Mrs. Edith Tietz (see LBI Archives, AR 481).
Martin Bloch was an Anglo-German Expressionist painter born in 1883 in Neisse, Silesia (now Nysa, Poland). He studied violin and architecture before pursuing art, which he studied in Munich under Heinrich Wölfflin in 1905 and then in Berlin under George Mosson and Lovis Corinth. He traveled to Paris in 1912 and then Spain, where he was stranded during World War I and worked with Jules Pascin. He returned to Germany and exhibited his works from 1920 to 1933, during which time he also ran an art school. In 1933, he escaped from Nazi Germany, spending a year in Denmark before emigrating to London and reopening his art school. . During World War II he was briefly interned as an enemy alien on the Isle of Man. He became a naturalized British citizen in 1947, often visiting Wales and occasionally the US and Canada.
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Bloch, Martin: Jewish Girl, Leo Baeck Institute, 77.52.