GERSHON ISKOWITZ "CRESCENT", WATERCOLOR 1977
It is somewhat hard to reconcile Gershon Iskowitz's (1921-1988) aesthetic with his personal history.
Born to a religious family in Poland, Iskowitz was allowed to leave Yeshiva (Jewish religious studies) in order to study art independently and later a brief stint at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw.
The outbreak of war forced him to return to his hometown where he was shortly after conscripted to forced labor. In 1944 Iskowitz was transferred to Buchenwald, one of the first and most notorious Nazi concentration camps.
Upon liberation Iskowitz spent nearly 9 months in hospital recuperating. Amazingly he would study for six months at the Academy of Fine Art in Munich with Oskar Kokoschka.
Iskowitz would eventually immigrate to Canada. For most of the 1950's he incorporated representation into his art. By the 60's he had established a modest reputation and joined the Gallery Moos stable in 1964.
The legend goes that in 1967 thanks to a Canadian Council grant, Iskowitz took an aircraft tour to fly over the sub-Arctic landscape and the coast of Hudson Bay. The experience of seeing the massive expanse of trees from above inspired a major redirection of his aesthetic and approach.
This confident watercolor is a perfect example of Iskowitz's iconic style and his celebration of pure, uplifting primary colors.
Additional images available on request.
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Signed and dated by the artist
"Untitled C-184" ("Cluster")
Watercolor on paper
22"W 17"H (work)
28"W 23"H (framed)
Provenance: Gallery Moos, Toronto
Very good condition
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