In Loving Memory of Barbara Leventhal-Stern

Barbara Leventhal-Stern Art

In Loving Memory of Barbara Leventhal-Stern

Barbara Leventhal-Stern was born in Springfield, Ohio in 1948. Her formal art education began in St. Louis, Missouri at Washington University School of Fine Art. It was in their gallery that she first saw the paintings of Max Beckman, who had taught there after leaving Germany. In the Art School Library she found a collection of books on German Expressionism, and she immediately fell in love with their wood cut prints.

After two years, Barbara left St. Louis and enrolled in The Boston Museum School where she was free to spend hours in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, next door. In Boston, she concentrated on Painting and Etching. She then finished her B.F.A. in London through a joint program with Tufts University and studied Printing at the London Polytech. During this time, she lived in Cambridge, England and taught drawing for the Workers’ Educations Association.

Eventually returning to the U.S., Barbara joined a community of artists situated on what once was a chicken farm in New Haven, Connecticut. After the chickens died off, the place was wistfully named, "Bittersweet Farm" and was converted into artist studios, complete with bucolic goats and organic gardens. During the four years that she lived at this commune, she studied figure drawing and painting with Dutch Artist, Roger Van Damme.

In 1978, Barbara moved to Southern California and began a Master’s Degree in Painting, at the Claremont Graduate School of Art. However, she did not finish her graduate degree until 1985, at San Jose State University where she studied with Sam Richardson and Geoff Bowman. Since then, she worked in her own studio in Palo Alto, California making paintings, drawings, and prints, designing and cutting all of her own woodblocks and then publishing print editions through Kala Institute in Berkley, California. To produce her small editions of etching, she worked collaboratively with Master Printer, Davis Kelso at his Made-in-California Studio.

Barbara’s work was essentially narrative and there was always a story at the core of what she did. She usually worked in a series that allowed her to process subjects that both interested and troubled her over time.

During the last years of her life, Barbara worked on a series of paintings about two specific communities of people; Eastern European Jews before the Holocaust and world circus performers. As wildly different as these themes seem to be, they were linked together in her mind. Both of these people lived on the edge of life and walked a tightrope, upon which they tried to keep their precarious balance, for better or worse.


  • 1985 M.A. Graduate Department of Art, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA
  • 1978 Claremont Graduate School of Art Claremont, CA
  • 1972 B.F.A. The Boston Museum School, Boston, MA
  • 1972 Tufts University, Medford, MA
  • 1972 Tufts University in London, England
  • 1972 The London Polytech, London, England
  • 1966 Washington University School of Fine Arts, St Louis, MO

Grants and Prizes

  • 2004 Mentor, Carrie Abramovitz Scholarship Fund, Palo Alto Art Center, Palo Alto, CA
  • 2003 Fellowship for Visual Artist, Arts Council Silicon Valley, San Jose, CA
  • 2001 Prize, North American Print Competition, Boston University, Boston, MA
  • 2001 Grant/Philanthropic Venture Foundation, Oakland, CA
  • 1995 Grant/Arts Connect, Santa Clara Arts Council, San Jose, CA
  • 1989 Grant to an Individual Artist, The Peninsula Community Foundation, San Francisco, CA
  • 1986 Prize/Rank Xerox Corporation, London, England
  • 1985 Grant/Ann Flanagan Residency Program, Kala Institute, Berkeley, CA
  • 1975 Grant to an Individual Artist, The Connecticut Commission on the Arts, New Haven, CT
  • 1975 Merry Jane Kravitz Scholarship, Creative Arts Workshop, New Haven, CT


  • The National Museum of Women in the Arts Library and Research Center Washington D.C.
  • Skirball Museum, Los Angeles, CA
  • The Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, San Francisco, CA
  • The Judah Magnes Museum, Berkeley, CA
  • The Museum of Modern Art, Ljublana, Yugoslavia
  • The Dayton Museum, Dayton, OH
  • Taipei Fine Art Museum, Taiwan
  • The Springfield Museum of Art, Springfield, OH
  • Rutgers University, IN
  • The Jewish Community Library, San Francisco, CA
  • Jewish Family Services, Palo Alto, CA
  • The Rhoda Goldman Center, San Francisco, CA
  • The Albert L. Schultz Jewish Community Center, Palo Alto, CA
  • Kala Institute, Berkeley, CA
  • The Junior Museum, Palo Alto, CA
  • Cranbrook-Kingswood School, Bloomfield Hills, MI
  • Truckee Meadows Junior College, Reno, Nevada
  • Gallery Fort, Cadaques, Spain
  • Western Galilee College, Akko, Israel

Selected Group Shows


  • Intaglio Edition from Made in California Press, Dolby Chadwick, San Francisco, CA
  • If They Could Talk, Exploding Head Gallery, Sacramento, CA
  • The Art of the Game, George Krevsky Gallery, San Francisco, CA
  • 24 Years of Prints, B. Sakato Garo Gallery, Sacramento, CA
  • Bittersweet Legacy, The Holocaust Memorial Museum, Maitland, FL


  • Insomnia, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, D.C.
  • Artist Fellowship Exhibition, Triton Museum of Art, Santa Clara, CA
  • Face to Face, Platt/Borstein Gallery, The University of Judaism, Bel Air, CA
  • Woodcuts, Truckee Meadows Community College, Reno, NV


  • Perspectives on Printmaking, Exploding Head Gallery, Sacramento, CA


  • Recent Acquisitions, The Judah Magnes Museum, Berkeley, CA
  • Bittersweet Legacy, Rose Shenson Gallery, The Triton Museum, Santa Clara, CA
  • Los Angeles Printmakers, Leband Gallery, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA
  • Prints, Silvermine Gallery, New Cancean, CT


  • Faultlines and Watermarks/California/Amsterdam, Amsterdam Grafish Atelier, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
  • Woodcuts, Collectors Gallery, Oakland Museum of Art, Oakland, CA
  • Woodcuts and Etchings, Cecile Moochneck Gallery, Berkeley, CA
  • Prints, Blue Pony Gallery, Charlotte, NC


  • Hidden, Concealed and Revealed, Fine, Perlow, and Weiss Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Winter Light, Jewish Community Library, San Francisco, CA
  • Transition and Tradition in the 90’s, Soma Gallery, San Francisco, CA


  • The Fantastic Image, Fetterly Gallery, Vallejo, CA
  • Trial by Fire, Michael Himovitz Gallery, Sacramento, CA
  • Women Confronting the Issue of Age, San Jose Institute of Contemporary art, San Jose, CA
  • Personal Transformations, Bade Museum, Pacific Graduate School of Religion, Berkeley, CA


  • Taking Flight, bound portfolio, Colliphony Books, San Francisco, CA
  • The Prints and the Paper, San Diego Art Institute, San Diego, CA
  • Primavera, Spectrum Gallery, San Francisco, CA
  • Prints, Syntex Gallery, Syntex Corporation, Palo Alto, CA


  • Creating the Edge, Quartersaw Gallery, Portland, OR
  • Telling Stories, (Artists Books and Journels,) Prieto Gallery, Mill College, Oakland, CA


  • Biennial Exhibition of Woodcuts in Banska Bystrica, The Czechoslavak Socialist Republic
  • Freehand Drawing Loosely Defined, Euphrate Gallery, DeAnza College, Cupertino, CA
  • Introductions, Michael Himovitz Gallery, Sacramento, CA
  • Idiomatic Images, Branner Spangenberg Gallery, Palo Alto, CA


  • Boston Printmakers, Fitchburg Art Museum, Fitchburg, MA


  • Woodcut Prints, Garden West College, Huntington Beach, CA
  • B.C. Space Gallery, Laguna Beach, CA
  • A Book in Hand, Arvada Center For the Arts, Arvada, CO
  • A Different Dimension, Seip Gallery, Palo Alto, CA


  • Imprint, Print from New Zealand and Santa Clara County, San Jose Art League, San Jose, CA
  • Prints With a Point, Hard Times Gallery, Bristol, England
  • The American Minature Printmaker, San Diego State University, traveling show to India and the Far East


  • The Biennial of Graphic Art, Museum of Modern Art, Ljubljana, Yugoslavia
  • Ann Flanagan Award Winners, Kala Institute, Berkeley, CA
  • Women’s Autobiographical Books, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee WI
  • Introductions, Barbara Leventhal-Stern and Sandra Beard, The Art Corridor, Atherton, CA
  • Lawson Gallery, San Francisco, CA
  • Undercover: Artists Books, Fresno Art Museum, Fresno, CA
  • Bird in Hand Gallery, Washington, D.C.


  • Tradition and Innovation in Printmaking Today, Rank Xerox Corporation, England.
  • Prints, University Press Books, Berkeley, CA
  • Prints in Kanagawa, Kanagawa, Japan
  • The Peoples Gallery, London, England.


  • Cabo Frio Print Biennial, Cabo Frio, Brazil
  • International, Engravings, Gallery Fort, Cadaques, Spain
  • Printed by Women, Port of History Museum, Philadelphia, PA
  • Ames Gallery, Berkeley, CA


  • Boston Printmakers, DeCordova Museum Lincoln, MA
  • Surface Marks, Libra Gallery, Claremont Colleges, Claremont, CA
  • The Women’s Building Los Angeles, CA


2000 – 2004

  • Critic’s Pick, Victoria Dalkey, Art Critic, Sacramento Bee, June 2004
  • Previews, Debra Koppman, Artweek Magazine, November 2004
  • Insomnia: Landscapes of the Night, Susan Morse, The Washington Post, Washington, D.C. March, 2003
  • Night Hawks: Two Exhibits Explore Insomnia, Anna Gawel, The Washington Diplomat June, 2003
  • Fellowship Show, Jack Fischer, San Jose Mercury News, San Jose, CA, July, 2003
  • Arts Council Silicon Valley Grant Winners, Artweek Volume 34, issue 7, September 2003
  • Hummingbird Conditions, Poetry by Esther Kamkar, Woodcuts by Barbara Leventhal-Stern, Ziba Press, Palo Alto, CA
  • Calyx A Journal of Art and Literature for women, Vol. 20, No.3, Summer 2002, Corvalis, OR
  • The Human Condition through Body and Narrative , Terese Rohan, Gallery at Villa Montalvo, Saratoga, CA, 2001
  • Bittersweet Legacy/Studies in the Shoah, Cynthia Moskowitz Brody, editor, University Press of America, New York, Oxford 2001
  • The Monserrat Review, Cynthia Lowe, editor, woodcut by Barbara Leventhal-Stern

1990 – 1999

  • Printmaker Drawn to Arts Healing Power, Kimberly Chen, San Francisco Chronicle, July 1998
  • Staying on Board, Jim Harrington, Arts and Entertainment The Palo Alto Weekly, May 1998
  • Crossing the Line/Prints and Pastels by Barbara Leventhal-Stern, Signe Mayfield, curator, Palo Alto Cultural Center, May 1998
  • Zyzzyva, Howard Junker, editor, woodcut by Barbara Leventhal-Stern, Spring 1997
  • Exhibit at Montalvo Tells a Story, Shari Kaplan, Los Gatos Weekly Times, May 1997
  • Six Artists Whose Works Speak, Martin Cheek, Triumph Magazine, San Jose, Fall 1997
  • Deep from the Well, Barbara Leventhal-Stern, Detail/ A Journal of Art Criticism, San Jose, CA
  • Arts, The Cupertino Courier, April 26, 1995
  • Exhibit Loosely Defines Drawing, Malia Sign, La Voz, De Anza College, Cupertino, CA
  • A Colorful Mad Menagerie of Art to Bring Out the Animal in You, Dorothy Burkhart, San Jose Mercury News, July 1991
  • A Room of One’s Own, Eric Reyes, Metro, April 1991
  • Intriguing Intro, Victoria Dalkey, Sacramento Bee, July 21, 1991
  • Saying Alive, Tim Goodman, The Palo Alto Weekly, August 15, 1990

1980 – 1989

  • The Art of Healing: Working it out on Paper, Sandra Park, Pacific View Magazine, Spring 1989
  • Love, Loss, and Relationships, Kathleen Donnelly, The Palo Alto Weekly, November 1988
  • Around the Galleries, Jane Ayres, San Jose Mercury News, April 1989
  • An Interaction with Artists, Anna Novakov, Artweek, July 1988
  • In the Gallery, Cathleen Bowen, Metier, Winter 1988
  • Agada, Reuben Goldfrad, editor, illustrations, Barbara Leventhal-Stern, Berkeley, CA
  • Kala Printmaking, Image Magazine, San Francisco Examiner, December 13, 1987
  • New Prints at Local Workshops, World Print Courier, Anna Novakaov, editor
  • Worth a Look, Karen Croft, Palo Alto Weekly, July 1, 1987
  • Contemporary Jewish Themes in Californians, WestArt, March , 1987
  • Personalizing Big Issues in Prints, Susan Wolfe, Arts and Entertainment, Palo Alto Weekly, June, 1986
  • Artist’s Bizarre Works in Stanford Show, Sylvia Rode, San Jose Mercury News, September, 1984
  • Printed by Women, Saray Van Keuren Steinbrook, The Philadelphia Photos Review, Vol. 7, No. 3
  • Tight Formats for Diffuse Anger, Sylvia Roder, Artweeks, October, 1983
  • The Arts, Tonia MacNeal, Palo Alto Weekly, May, 1982
  • Artistic Variety, Peninsula Times Tribune, January, 1982
  • Dreamy Photographs and Drawings, WestArt, January, 1982

1970 – 1979

  • A New View of the Condition of Age, Ann Miller, The New Haven Advocate, Spring 1976
  • Speaking Books, Arthur F. Beringause, The Jewish Press, Spring 1976
  • Judah and Yoni, Ruth Zakutinsky, author, illustrations by Barbara Leventhal-Stern, Aura Press, New Haven, CT, 1975