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Hannelore Baron

American, 1926-1987


Hannelore Baron

Untitled, 1981

Oil, wood, string, fabric, paper collage in artist’s frame and easel
9 3/4 x 10 1/2 x 1 3/4 in
25 x 27 x 4 cm


Hannelore Baron was born in Dilligen, Germany near the French border in 1926. In 1938 her family’s textile shop was destroyed, her family home was ransacked, and her father was brutally beaten by Hitler’s Nazi regime. Baron and her family fled persecution in Nazi Germany, illegally crossing the border into Luxembourg in 1939. Hannelore’s childhood was filled with anxiety, displacement, trauma, and violence due to the Holocaust and fleeing of Nazi Germany. In 1941 Baron's family sailed from Lisbon to New York and settled in the Bronx, New York City. Hannelore Baron turned to her textile roots and enrolled in the Straubenmuller Textile High School in Manhattan. As a young adult, Baron was avidly reading eastern philosophy, making increasingly abstract paintings, and experiencing the symptoms of claustrophobia, depression, nervous breakdowns, anxiety, and trauma. In the late 1950s, Baron combined a variety of techniques and began making her first collages. Baron continued with her art and even became a member of the National Association of Women Artists. She also volunteered at the Yonkers Jewish Community College which started to give her access to wood materials. Baron began to make the box constructions that would become her true signature. Baron’s own personal 
narrative depicts the anxiety and traumatic memories of her childhood fleeing of Nazi Germany, which are engrained in Baron’s signature artwork. Baron’s works have been exhibited at MoMA, Whitney, Guggenheim, Smithsonian, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Israel Museum, and Albright-Knox Gallery.