Positive impact of émigrés on art world

Des O’Sullivan lauds a celebration of refugees’ cultural contribution.

Positive impact of émigrés on art world

Des O’Sullivan lauds a celebration of refugees’ cultural contribution.

In our brave new world where refugees drown in the Mediterranean, children live in appalling conditions in camps near the Mexican border, and President Trump boldly suggests American-born citizens of ethnic origin go back to where their families originated, it is refreshing and different to see an exhibition where émigrés are celebrated.

Brave New Visions: The Émigrés who transformed the British Art World, organised by Sotheby’s, shows how in bleak post-war London, a group of émigrés who had found sanctuary in Britain in the 1930s re-made their lives and introduced avant-garde European and British artists such as Naum Gabo, Oskar Kokoschka, Kurt Schwitters, Graham Sutherland and Ben Nicholson to the broader public.

Josef Herman - Refugees at Sotheby's.
Josef Herman - Refugees at Sotheby's.

Featuring over 40 paintings and sculptures, alongside unique documentary material, the exhibition reveals the story of a displaced community that thrived in an unfamiliar environment. It is at Sotheby’s St George Street Gallery until August 9 and is part of Insiders/Outsiders, a year-long festival celebrating refugees from Nazi Europe and their contribution to British culture.

Visit www.insidersoutsidersfestival.org/event/brave-new-visions-exhibition-sothebys to find out more information.

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