A mixed media gouache and pastel portrait work by the gifted and fondly remembered Russian Jewish artist Alexander Davidovich Ziliouk – Sacha Zaliouk. In 1912 the artist moved to Paris, studying at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. A regular contributor toantasio, Sourire, Le Journal Amusant, La Vie Parisienne, and Paris-plaisirs his work captured the spirited Roaring Twenties flapper girl. He set up a studio in the neighborhood of Montparnasse and became a well known and often exhibited avant-garde artist. This rather voyeuristic, haunting, and evocative portrait of a lovely young Parisian captures his moment and unique relationship to the city wonderfully. The work is beautifully framed and matted in an ornate antique gesso carved gold frame behind glass.
Alexander Davidovich Zaliouk, or Sacha Zaliouk, was born in 1887 in the small Jewish village of Radomyshl in Ukraine. From 1904 to 1910 he studied painting in Petrograd and at the Odessa School of Arts. After his studies he collaborated on a number of publications: the Odessa magazine Crocodile (1911-1912), South Week (1912-1913) and the South Thought newspaper (from 1911). Zaliouk also made drawings and illustrations for Odessa Stage Revue (1912). At the time he signed his work with “Sasha”, “Sash” or “A.Z.”. From 1908 to 1912 he took part in the exhibitions of the Society of South Russian Artists (Obshchestvo iuzhnorusskikh khudozhnikov).
In 1912 Sacha Zaliouk emigrated to Paris where he completed his art studies at the Paris Ecole des Beaux-Arts. It is also believed, according to Odessa newspapers of the mid-1910s, that Zaliouk enlisted as a volunteer of the French Army and fought at Verdun. He lived and became known in the Paris area of Montparnasse, renowned for its artistic environment. Among his acquaintances we find fellow artist Leonard Foujita and his tutor Raphael Collin. His breakthrough came in 1919 when he exhibited his portraits of literary figures, artists and celebrities. The French newspapers at the time dubbed him le plus Montparno des Montparno. He also made a number of sculptures.
In the 1920s he made a name for himself as a gifted illustrator, cartoonist and portrait painter. He worked for satirical French magazines such as Fantasio, Sourire, Le Journal Amusant, La Parisienne and the more scabrous Paris-plaisirs.