Artistic Freedom Well Spent

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

We have spared no shortage of blog space on our problems with George Washington University over the past three decades. Nonetheless, we found something worthwhile on their Foggy Bottom campus that all who are in the vicinity of it should check out—an art exhibit at the Textile Museum there.

lily spandorf

Indeed, the late Lily Spandorf (1914-2000) may have been one of the finest artists you never heard of. The Austrian-born Holocaust survivor worked as an illustrator for decades for The Washington Star and the Washington Post as well as The Christian Science Monitor and National Geographic. You may have seen her work in one of those publications or you might even be hanging it on your Christmas tree.

Soon after arriving in the United States, she settled in Washington, D. C., where she spent decades capturing the city’s changing landscape in pen, ink and watercolor. She brought an old-world style to her work but it was a style uniquely her own.

Long-time denizens of our nation’s capital might be particularly startled to learn that this Dupont Circle resident made the rounds of the city on painting excursions while wheeling her art supplies around in a shopping cart. There’s a strong possibility that many thought she was homeless.