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Biographical/Historical Information

The lawyer, legal scholar and Jewish philanthropist, Herman Veit Simon was born in Berlin in 1856. He worked mainly in Berlin, specializing in commercial law. As an active member of the Jewish community in Berlin, he was mainly engaged in support of the “Hochschule für die Wissenschaft des Judentums”. Herman Veit Simon died in 1914 and was buried in the Jewish cemetery on Schönhauser Allee in Berlin.

Max Liebermann trained in Weimar before continuing to study in Amsterdam and Paris, where he was influenced by Courbet, Millet, and the Barbizon School. Liebermann returned to Germany in 1878 and continued painting in the Impressionist style, founding the movement in his native country. In 1899, he helped found the Berlin Secession. He was a very influential figure in German art and was the dominant figure until the emergence of avant-garde art. He was the president of the Prussian Academy of Arts but was forced to resign in 1933 because he was Jewish.

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Liebermann, Max: Portrait of Herman Veit Simon, Leo Baeck Institute, 78.1608.