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Gita Lenz

Artist CV

Gita Lenz was born Gertrude Maslow on October 9th, 1910, to Louis Maslow and Yetta Youkeles, who were Jewish immigrants from Ukraine. Her father was a tailor; her mother as a piano teacher. She had one brother, whose name was Ephraim.

During the early 1930s, Gita married George Zoul, himself an immigrant from Czechoslovakia. Just a few years later, Zoul was killed in Spain while fighting with the Abraham Lincoln Brigade against Franco and the Spanish Nationalists. Gita remarried in 1940 to Richard Lenz, a union that would end in divorce 18 months later. There were no children from either marriage.

 

1940s: 

Graduated from Hunter College in 1940 with a BA in English.

Further education at The New School in Psychology.

 

1950s:

Became a professional fine art and commercial photographer in the early 1950s.

Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit, New York, NY, 1951

“Abstraction in Photography,” Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, 1951. Curated by Edward Steichen.

“Abstraction,” Photo Arts, October 1951.

Blumenfeld, Erwin. “Abstraction and Creation,” Photo Arts, October 1951. (accompanying article)

Marowitz, Charles. “Responsive Photography,” Photo Arts, November 1951. (feature with article)

Photo Arts, May and October 1952.

Featured in a three-person show entitled The Third Eye, Brooklyn Museum, with John Reed and Don Normark, October 22, 1952- January 4, 1953.

Photo Arts, July and August 1953.

American Annual of Photography, 1953. (Photo essay)

American Photography, March 1953. (feature)

U.S. Camera Annual Publication, 1954.

The Family of Man, Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, 1955. Curated by Edward Steichen.

 

1960s:

Worked variously as a copywriter, proof reader, researcher, and editorial assistant, while trying from time to time to revive and support her photo career.

Judging from letters and business recored, Gita did not continue her photographic career much beyond the mid 1960s. She needed to work full-time to support herself, and it is uncertain how much time she was able to devote to photography. From her letters, it is clear that Gita entertained the idea of returning to professional photography as late as 1970, but there is no evidence to suggest that she actually did so. She did, however, continue to pursue other creative interests. Chief among these was writing poetry, which she studied under William Packard, founder of The New York Quarterly, with whom she also worked.