Portrait of Mrs Robert Solomon
This portrait was commissioned by the Ben Uri Art Society as a prize in a portrait-painting competition. Mrs Solomon was a Vice-President of Ben Uri during the1930s. Her husband was President of the Jewish National Fund in England.
Kalman Kemeny was born and trained in Budapest, Hungary, and served as an officer, commissioned as the youngest Official War Artist with the Austro-Hungarian army on the Italian and Eastern Fronts between 1915 and 1917. His memories of this period were later recorded by the Imperial War Museum. He immigrated to England in the 1930s, settling in London and making his name with portraits, landscapes and still lives. He later taught at the Hammersmith and Chelsea schools of art.
The muted palette is typical of much of the artist’s work, reflecting the austerity of Britain in the period. The yellow tone compliments the sitter’s skin tone and reflects the gold of her jewellery.