A true Renaissance man, Leonard Baskin (American, 1922–2000) was an American graphic designer, sculptor, illustrator, painter, printmaker, writer, and teacher. He studied at the Yale University School of Fine Arts and soon after joined the faculty of Smith College where he founded Gehenna Press. Baskin is known for his figurative art and exploration of the theme of human mortality. He produced large-scale commissioned sculptures like the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial Washington D.C. and the Holocaust Museum in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He is also appreciated for his unique line quality and inventive woodcut techniques.
Baskin received numerous awards including the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Gold Medal of the National Academy of Arts & Letters, Medal of Merit from the American Institute of Graphic Arts, Gold Medal of the National Academy of Design, and the Jewish Cultural Achievement Award. Retrospectives of his work were held at the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian, and the Albertina, among others. Baskin's art can be found in major museum and collections worldwide.