David Levine was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1926 and studied at the Brooklyn Museum of Art School, Pratt Institute, the Tyler School of Art at Temple University and the Eighth Street School of New York with Hans Hoffman. His many awards included the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award in 1955 and, later, the Isaac Maynard, Julius Hallgarten and Thomas B. Clarke awards (all from the National Academy of Design), the George Polk Memorial Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Gold Medal of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1993. Internationally, David Levine received the French Legion of Honor award and the Thomas Nast Award in Landau, Germany.
Levine’s caricatures have been seen in Time, Newsweek, Esquire, Playboy, The New Yorker, New York Magazine, The Nation and, for 45 years, every issue of The New York Review of Books, as well as in numerous solo and group shows.
His caricatures and paintings are part of permanent collections at the Metropolitan Museum, the Library of Congress, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the National Portrait Gallery, Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum, England’s National Portrait Gallery, the New York Public Library, and the Pierpont Morgan Library in New York.
Six books have been published of David Levine’s art, including The Arts of David Levine (Knopf, 1978) and American Presidents (Fantagraphics, 2008). David Levine died in December 2009.