Throughout his life Arnold Bittleman was dedicated to drawing. A student at the Rhode Island School of Design in the early 1950s, Bittleman received his B.F.A. degree from Yale University then spent a year abroad on an Alice Kimball English Traveling Fellowship before completing his graduate work in New Haven. His deep respect for Old Master draughtsmen—Leonardo, Durer, and Goya, among them—coupled with the teachings of Josef Albers helped Bittleman determine his future directions. Bittleman believed drawing to be a process of thought, and not simply the transcription of observed images—a concept he pursued both as an artist and as a teacher at various institutions (including Yale, Minneapolis School of Art, and Union College in Schenectady from 1966 until his death).
Virginia M. Mecklenburg Modern American Realism: The Sara Roby Foundation Collection (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press for the National Museum of American Art, 1987)