Lea Nikel was an Israeli artist renowned for her distinct style of abstract painting. Born in Ukraine, her family emigrated to British-administered Palestine in 1920 after which she moved to Tel Aviv, Israel to study painting. She studied with Yehezkel Streichman, a pioneer of Modern Israeli painting, and Avigdor Stematsky who was a key figure in abstract art. In the 1960s and 70s Nikel lived in Rome and New York including a four year stay at the Chelsea Hotel in Manhattan, before returning to Israel where she remained for the rest of her career. Her paintings are abstract and energetic, with a foundation of bold vivid colours which she applied expressively. Nikel received various awards during her lifetime and exhibited widely including a career retrospective at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art in 1995.