Lotte Laserstein was born near Königsberg in 1898. In 1912 she moved with her mother and sister to Berlin, where she completed her study at the art academy, the Kunsthochschule, as a master student in 1927. Working in a style close to the Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity), she received numerous portrait commissions. In her work she focused on people, rendering them with a distanced immediacy. As a Jew she was no longer able to exhibit her work after 1933. In 1935 she was forced to close her private art school, and two years later she emigrated to Sweden. In that same year the Stockholm Galerie Moderne presented her work. Her attempt to rescue her family as well and bring them to Sweden was unsuccessful. Her mother died in a concentration camp, and her sister went into hiding and survived. Her international breakthrough finally came in 1987 with an exhibition in London. Laserstein died in Kalmar, Sweden, in 1993.