School of Paris

Who were these painters? If one were to point to what these artists had in common, it would be a belief in the old German saying, To live like God in France, „ which the Yiddish oral tradition has popularized as „Happy as a Jew in Paris,:  Azoy gliklich vi a yid in Paris.
Paris was the center of the world.  Arriving from the eastern part of Europe between 1905 and 1939, they were fleeing the anti-Semitism of their countries and seeking a land to receive them where their artistic aspirations would find free expression. These painters established themselves in Montparnasse, rubbed up against the burgeoning avant-garde of the time, recreating a shtetl of artists who met in the cafes of the quarter, and formed what is known as The Paris School. 
In books on The Paris School, the fact that they were Jewish is rarely mentioned.  These artists tend to be linked with their countries of origin, which they had fled, countries where their access to the fine arts was limited, even forbidden, due to the "numerus clausus", the quota restricting access to higher education.