(1867 - 1933)
Born in a coal-mining region of north central Pennsylvania, Luks studied first at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, and later in Germany, London, and Paris. Returning to the United States in 1894, he became an illustrator for the Philadelphia Press. During that period he met painter and teacher Robert Henri and illustrators John Sloan and William Glackens. Between 1902 and 1903 Luks lived in Paris, where he continued his art studies and became preoccupied with the depiction of modern city life. When he returned to New York City, he settled in Greenwich Village and began to paint realistic pictures of New Yorkers.
In 1908, with Henri, Sloan and Glackens, and four other painters, Luks formed a group called "The Eight," whose exhibitions in New York that year marked a key event in the history of modern painting in the United States. He and the other members of "The Eight" were eventually absorbed into a larger group of artists known as the Ashcan school, which continued the exploration of modern, urban realities. Luks continued to pursue his realistic depictions of urban scenes while new schools of abstraction began to dominate the New York art world. Luks later taught at the Art Students League from 1920-1924 and then opened his own art school.