Born in 1891 in the Ukraine shortly before his family immigrated to England, Meninsky completed most of his training at the Liverpool Art School, and received a grant to study at the Acadmie Julian in Paris before moving to London to study at the Slade. After a period working with Gordon Craig in Florence, Meninsky returned to London in 1913, where he joined the London Group. He exhibited with them every year until 1939.He taught life drawing at the Central School of Art and Design from 1913 until 1939. Although he enlisted with the Royal Fusiliers in 1914, he was considered physically unfit and worked as an official war artist in London in 1918.
He succeeded Sickert as teacher for the evening classes in life drawing at Westminster School of Art in 1920. Meninsky did not seek to make Judaism the subject of his work, but rather concentrated on portraits of his family and friends. He married Margaret O'Connor in 1917, and their first son, David, was born the following year. Meninsky's first one-man exhibition, held at the Goupil Gallery in 1919, took the theme of mother and child and was a popular success. Later, he turned towards idyllic pastorals of an imagined 'golden age', peopled with monumental women. He took his own life in 1950.