Biographical elements 1911-1928

30th September 1911 : Birth of Boris at the Tarnier hospital in Paris french flag
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Boris TASLITZKY talks about his parents.
Extract of the movie « L'Atelier de Boris » (Boris' studio), © Christophe COGNET, 2004
Son of the engineer Smerko (Simon) Taslitzky (7.09.1883 - 13.07.1915) and the seamstress Anna Riback-Taslitzky (15.06.1889 - ?.09.1942), daughter and granddaughter of a rabbi. Coming respectively from Ukraine (Ekaterinoslaw) and Crimea (Talnoe) in 1904 and 1905, they met in Paris. Following a misunderstanding by his mother whose fluency in French was still weak at that time, Boris is baptised by the cure of Saint-Jacques-du-Haut-Pas, as described in his autobiographical chronicle "Tu parles!..." (You speak)
Cf. Boris Taslitzky "Tu parles !...", published by L' Harmattan.

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Smerko (Simon) Taslitzky, Boris Taslitzky' father
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Child Boris Taslitsky
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Child Boris Taslitsky with his mother

13th July 1915 : Death of his father
Recruited as a voluntary sergeant in the 169th infantry troop, he is killed by the enemy in Ronchamp (Haute-Saône). Consequently, Boris is declared a ward of the nation.

1916 : Affected by a bronchial disease...
...He moves with his mother to Nice. There, the doctors advises Boris to spend time in the Alps. He stays at the pension La Colle-sur-Loup (Maritime Alps)..

1917 : His mother, dressmaker, ...
...Loses her job in Nice and goes working in Marseille. She brings Boris along and registers him at the Saint-Loup College.

October 1918 : Back in Paris
Boris and his mother both suffering from the Spanish flu almost died.

1919-1920 : They move several times within Paris to a number of places in rue des Cinq Diamants, rue Mirbel, etc
Boris is later put in a pension in Paris, then in Le Perreux and later to Oleron Isle, Asnieres, in Normandy.

Beginning of 1921 : His mother announces her second marriage to Victor Rosenblum.

30th September : Boris returns to Paris where he lives in Rue Vauquelin.
Boris returns to Paris where he lives in Rue Vauquelin. From this moment onwards Boris frequently sees the family of the new husband : his stepfather, Victor. Called Vitia, he is an engineer and also a skilled musician. Anna, Vitia's sister, is married to Stanislas Fumet, writer, journalist, militant catholic. Stanislas' father, Dynam-Victor Fumet, is an organist at Sainte-Anne. Raphael Fumet, Stanislas' brother, is a musician. Sophia Petroyna, Vitia's mother, runs a hostel and she is passionate about cinema where she occasionally brings Boris. The family is deeply nostalgic of the monarchy and are deeply catholic. When the family realises that Boris has been baptised, the family informs the archbishop of Paris. It was Pius XI himself who believed that God's hand had descended on this child.
Also, after Boris' mother prayed for Stanislas Fumet's daughter to recover from a disease and she eventually did, the family managed the religious education for Boris. His Mother, in the attempt to break the ties with the catholic enclosure, registers Boris in the rabbinical school rue Vauquelin. Boris ends up turning down both religion and refuses to celebrate both the communion and his bar mitzvah.

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Boris Taslitzky, child kneeling, top right his mother and stepfather, Victor Rosenblum, called Vitia
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VITIA, 1928, oil on plywood, 17,5 x 14 in

1924 : Because of his poor academic performance…
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Boris TASLITZKY decided to become a painter.
Extract of the movie « L'Atelier de Boris » (Boris' studio), © Christophe COGNET, 2004
...Despite having been previously the class' top student, his teacher, Mr. Weill, refuses to present his candidature to the "certificate d'etudes" (certificate of higher education) and upon his advice, Boris registers himself as a private candidate. He scores the highest mark among his school and the 5th highest in the neighbourhood. He is registered as apprentice to an Architect. Then he follows his Fine Arts courses at Montparnasse Boulevard for two years.

1926 : Boris decides to become a painter.
He joins the Modern Academy, 86 rue Notre-Dame-des-champs, Paris..

1928 : He paints "Farandole in the countryside" and sends the work to the Autumn Exhibition. The painting is rejected.
His stepfather, having become an alcoholic, separates from his mother.

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FARANDOLE IN THE COUNTRYSIDE, 1928, oil on canvas, 51,2 x 72,2 in