Master of Arts (MA)



Document Type



Walter Max Lewy (1905 – 1995) was a Surrealist painter and graphic designer who worked in Brazil for most of his career. Born in Germany to a Jewish family, the artist was forced to flee Europe in the eve of the Second World War, finding a safe haven in the city of São Paulo. The city’s budding modern art scene provided solid ground for Lewy’s art to flourish. His achievements epitomize the global occurrence of Modernism, in its manifestations outside the traditional Western artistic centers of the world. This thesis is the first comprehensive analysis of Walter Lewy’s life and work to be written in English. It examines his body of work that consists of paintings, prints and illustrations, from the first woodcuts made in the Weimar Republic (1919 – 1933) in Germany through the massive number of Surrealist paintings the artist had produced by the end of the military dictatorship (1964 – 1985) in Brazil. The aim of this thesis is to make the work of this somewhat forgotten figure available to a wider audience, as well as to preserve Lewy’s legacy as a relevant player in the development of Brazilian modern art.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Spieth, Darius A.