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1891 - 1950

Portrait of a Boy
Oil on canvas
112 x 61 cm
Presented by John Wood, 1939 © The Estate of Bernard Meninsky / Bridgeman Images. Photography Norman Taylor


Bernard Meninsky was born in Ukraine, but brought up in Liverpool. He studied at Liverpool School of Art before winning a scholarship to study at the Slade School of Art, London, in 1912.

He was an official war artist for the Ministry of Information during the First World War, when this portrait was made. The colours used show the influence of Post-Impressionist artists such as Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin, who had featured in the 1910 exhibition in London, ‘Manet and the Post-Impressionists’.

This exhibition had a huge impact on young artists, causing Virginia Woolf to write, ‘on or about December 1910, human character changed’.