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LeRoy Neiman was an American artist known for his vibrant and dynamic paintings, capturing scenes from sports, entertainment, and the good life. He was born on June 8, 1921, in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and grew up in a blue-collar neighborhood. Neiman showed an early talent for drawing and started selling his artwork at a young age.

After serving in the U.S. Army during World War II, Neiman studied at the Saint Paul School of Art and the School of The Art Institute of Chicago. He became a successful artist, with his work being acquired by prestigious museums and galleries. In 1954, he began a long-standing partnership with Playboy magazine, where he wrote and illustrated the column "Man at His Leisure" for 15 years. Neiman's association with Playboy helped him gain recognition and allowed him to travel extensively to paint and document the high life.

Neiman's paintings often depicted iconic figures in sports, politics, and entertainment, capturing the drama and energy of their performances. He became particularly well-known for his sports-related artwork, including boxing, basketball, hockey, and more. His TV appearances and media presence, along with his distinctive handlebar mustache and Cuban cigar, made him one of the world's most famous living artists.

In addition to his artistic career, Neiman and his wife, Janet Byrne Neiman, established the LeRoy Neiman Foundation to support arts education. The foundation funded various programs and centers, such as the LeRoy Neiman Center for Print Studies at Columbia University and the LeRoy Neiman Center for Study of American Culture and Society at UCLA.

LeRoy Neiman passed away in 2012, leaving behind a significant artistic legacy. His work can be found in museums, galleries, and private collections worldwide. His philanthropic efforts and dedication to arts education continue through the programs and centers established by his foundation.

Photo extracted from: https://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/21/arts/leroy-neiman-prolific-painter-of-sports-dies-at-91.html

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