Schwartz was a Belarus-born sculptor who worked in Chicago. During the Depression he worked on the Federal Art Project payroll. He painted Regionalist works and in both painting and sculptural modes he was greatly influenced by European surrealism.
The sculpture Lilly by William S. Schwartz is imbued with exquisite grace. Free from any naturalistic constraints, the head is regally attenuated. There is a simplicity in the structure and in the delicate contours of the head. There is additionally a sophisticated stylization to the formalization of this sculpture which renders it at the very least decorative or at best designed with an exquisite purity of form.