Lhévinne, Josef. A portrait photograph in fine condition of the legendary Russian piano virtuoso, Josef Lhévinne (1874-1944), in a bust pose, showing the right side of his face in profile. 26 cm x 20 cm. Annotations in pencil on the verso of this silver gelatin print are: “4167-K” and “225 Fifth Ave.” Printed on heavy double weight stock, the photographer’s stamp, Fink of Portland, Oregon, is on the lower right-hand edge opposite Josef Lhévinne’s stickpin.
The photograph is inscribed, signed, dated and placed in a meticulous hand, using white ink: “To Mr. Siegfried H. Kahn in kind remembrance from Josef Lhévinne Kew Gardens, NY May 18, 1922.” This is a magnificent image of Mr. Lhévinne at 48 years old, just as his concert career in America was beginning again after World War I and before he joined the star faculty of the Juilliard Graduate School at the Institute of Musical Art in October 1924, where he received the princely sum of $40.00 an hour for lessons. Teaching there until his untimely death in 1944 in tandem with his wife, Rosina Lhévinne, also a Moscow Conservatory Gold Medal winner and a virtuoso in her own right, they were also considered to be the greatest two-piano team of their time – if not, in the estimation of Arthur Rubinstein, of all time. At the time this photograph was signed, the Lhévinnes maintained a home in Kew Gardens, Queens, where they raised their two children.