It is common practice for artists to sign their works. Nevertheless, there are many cases in which artists refrained from doing so for various reasons. The presence of a signature on a picture provides supporting evidence of its attribution but is not an essential prerequisite.
Menachem Shemi was not consistent in signing all his paintings, and when he did so, it took in various forms. In Hebrew, they were: שמידט ,שמיט ,שמי, often with the initial .מ. In Russia, he signed in Russian. Starting with his first drawing in Jerusalem in 1914 and until 1921, he signed שמידט (Shmidt). In 1922, he began also using the spelling שמיט (Shmit), which he frequently used to sign his paintings in the '30s. A first, one-time, use of the signature שמי (Shemi) appears on a picture painted in 1944. In 1948 the name שמי (Shemi) appears quite frequently alongside the signature שמיט (Shmit or Schmit) and from 1949, this is almost always the case. His non-Hebrew signatures are also varied: Schmidt; Shmidt; Schmit; Shmit and Shemi.
Some of Shemi's paintings were signed by others without impairing their artistic value. On the other hand, from time to time paintings turn up bearing what appears to be the signature of Menachem Shemi, when they are clearly not his work. Such pictures are not included in this catalogue.
This presentation of typical Menachem Shemi signatures displays their variety over the years.