Isaac Dobrinsky was seven years old when his father, who was a religious man, died. After studying in a Talmudic school, he moved to Kiev for six years, where he began to model figures in clay. Afterwards, he studied at the Sabatovski art school while working for a tin-can maker. Dobrinsky arrived in Paris in 1912 and was welcomed warmly by the sculptor Marek Szwarc. He settled at La Ruche and shared his studio with Chaim Soutine. A year after he arrived in France, Dobrinksy fell ill and abandoned sculpture for painting.
In 1914, Dobrinsky joined the French Foreign Legion, but was quickly exempted for medical reasons. He returned to Paris and studied at the Académie Colarossi and met Vera Kremer, who he married in 1926 (her father Arkadi Kremer was one of the founders of the Bund). After living at La Ruche for 27 years, Dobrinsky moved to rue d’Odessa in 1934. In 1942, he left Paris for Bergerac, where he found refuge and met Hersch Fenster and his family. He returned to Paris after the Liberation. In 1948, Serge and Rachel Pludermacher set up Champsfleur in Maisons-Laffitte, a home for around 200 children orphaned by the Nazis. Serge Pludermacher called Dobrinsky and asked him to paint the portrait of the children.
Nieszawer & Princ
"Artistes juifs de l’Ecole de Paris 1905-1939"
Editons Somogy 2015