Amalie Rothschild: Baltimore Artist

Posted on June 22, 2011 by

Taking a break from the recent findings/events with the medical aspect of the museum, I thought I would share the recent history lesson I received. I am not from the Baltimore area. I am not even from Maryland. I come from the hills of West Virginia (not Wrong Turn style though) so every day at the museum I learn something new about the area that I am working in and the people that inhabit it. Since my stay one item in particular has caught my eye or I should say the person that created this piece has intrigued me. Apparently, Amalie Rothschild is a rock star in the eyes of those that work for the museum so I wanted to see how she obtained this status.

Image of Amalie Rothschild from her book "Drawings," published in 1968.

After doing some detective work, I discovered that Rothschild was born in 1916 to a German-Jewish family in the Baltimore area. She lived in this area all through her teens and even into her college years. It was only when she had a fellowship in Paris that the possibility of her leaving Maryland surfaced. Lucky for Maryland, Rothschild was asked by her mother to come home and she agreed. After that it was history.

"Moses and the Burning Bush" from 1951, a new addition to the JMM's collections, 2011.18.1

The history that this includes is quite impressive. She co-opened a gallery, Gallery One, in Baltimore in 1959. In 1962 along with 18 other artists, she staged an exhibit to protest their work not being accepted by the jury for the Maryland Artists Exhibition. To list the boards, museums, colleges, and other Maryland art related things she has done would probably take up the rest of this blog so you get the point that she was very influential in this matter.

Once one finds success as Rothschild did, you would assume that it would be easy to travel to a place where art has a more prominent role. Instead, she chose to feed her skills into the community to make it more artist friendly. Learning so early on in my internship that there was this wonderful woman who took pride in her community by being a success close to home is a breath of fresh air. She did great things for Maryland that were not only through her art, and I hope people will still remember her for those contributions in the future. I know I will.

For more information about Amalie Rothschild, check out the Jewish Women’s Archive’s “We Remember” project.


A blog post by intern Codi Lamb.


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