Jacqueline Piatigorsky was the daughter of Baron Edouard de Rothschild of the French banking dynasty, and grew up in a magnificent home filled with the works of such masters as Goya, Fragonard, Franz Hals and Rubens.  Art was an inherent part of her makeup, and she spent much of her life creating and developing her own unique artistic identity. Although initially she worked in drawing and oil painting, she was drawn to the more complex three-dimensional representations of sculpture for self-expression.  She worked in clay for several years before she started experimenting in stone sculpture in her late forties.

    After initial efforts on her own, she had the good fortune to meet Anthony Amato, who became her mentor and friend, and taught her how to deal with the demands of shaping the hard, unyielding, and often-treacherous material of stone into subtle and beautiful shapes. Her earlier works were often representational, and many of her most remarkable pieces were birds or birdlike, with special expressive postures and  - yes, motion, in contrast to their weighty material.  Some of her pieces are complicated graceful 3-dimensional geometric shapes, almost extracted from the blocks of stone.

    She accomplished separate, non overlapping fields more than most ever imagine achieving in a single area.  She studied piano in her youth, taught herself basoon later and even composed a piece that her cellist husband played in concert.  She was inducted into the U.S Chess Hall of Fame for her brilliant tournament achievements (bronze medallist in the chess Olympics, 1957) and many contributions as a patron and pioneer in chess.  During her senior years she won more than forty national tennis championships.

    Her literary efforts led her to publish an insightful memoir (Jump in the Waves, St Martin Press 1988) as well as several essays.  In 1966 she was honored for her unique contributions by being chosen by the Los Angeles Times as Woman of the Year.


Jacqueline Piatigorsky with sculpture, Fusion found in Beverly Hills City Hall, Beverly Hills, CA

Jacqueline Piatigorsky with sculpture, Double Infinity in her home studio in Brentwood, CA


information extracted from the Preface by Jephta and Daniel Drachman, and Joram and Lona Piatigorsky, in the catalogue of Jacqueline Piatigorsky's final  sculpture exhibition, Stone Comes to Life