Modern British Art by Archibald Ziegler: Young girl with platted hair, seated on a bed | www.LLFA.uk

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Archibald Ziegler:
Young girl with platted hair, seated on a bed

Unmounted (ref: 4853)

Signed and dated
Black chalk, 18 3/4 x 12 in. (48 x 28 cm.)

Tags: children portraits



It is perhaps surprising to learn that Archibald Ziegler - an artist

little known today - had 14 one man shows during his life time held

at prestigious venues which included the Whitechapel Art Gallery

(1932), Adam Gallery (1935), Wertheim Gallery (1937), Leger Gallery

(1938) and the Ben Uri Gallery (four shows between 1950-59).

Ziegler was born in London in 1903 and studied at the Central

School of Arts and Crafts. He subsequently (from 1927 to 1930)

studied at the Royal College of Art under William Rothenstein,

whom he recalled as ‘a lively and inspiring Principal’. The late 1920s

was a rich period to attend the RCA : the likes of Bawden, Ravilious,

Mahoney, Sorrell, Bliss and Freedman had already completed their

formative studies and, in what was to prove the golden age of the

Royal College of Art, their influence can be seen in Ziegler’s early

work. Later on the influence of his fellow Jewish artists - Joseph

Herman, Bernard Meninksy, David Bomberg, Mark Gertler, Emmanuel

Levy and Fred Ulhman, all of whom he empathised with

and wrote about with enthusiasm, came increasingly to the fore (see

‘Archibald Ziegler, Jewish Artists in England’, Studio International, vol

153-154, 1957).

After leaving the RCA Ziegler taught drawing and painting

at St. Martin’s School of Art (where he was a visiting instructor

for Figure Drawing and Painting) and Art History at Morley

College in London and for the Worker’s Educational Association.

His work was widely reproduced in publications including

Illustrated London News, Country Life, Architectural Review,

Mater Builder, Architecture Illustrated, Studio Artist, Courier,6

London Mercury, Leader, Bookman and The Artist. His Royal Academy

exhibits (which between 1931 and 1970 numbered 12) were

mostly of his locality: Chelsea in the 1930s, Hendon and Hertfordshire

in the 1940s and Hampstead from the 1950s onwards.

In the final year of his life, 1971, Ziegler was given an

exhibition at Kenwood House, London - the first living

artist to be so honoured. The catalogue opens with the statement

that (even during his own life time) “Zielger is an unfashionable

artist”. The text continues, “He is also a dedicated one,

to whom the latest manifestations of the avant-garde may well

be of interest but of little immediate attraction: a traditionalist,

who believes, naturally, in experiment, but who has never Hampstead Heath Centenary Exhibition / Archibald Ziegler,’ page

1.) This statement - which might equally be used to describe

many of his contemporaries who have also slipped from view during

their own life time by virtue of being reactionary rather

than avant garde - also explains precisely why such artists are now

slowly re-emerging to re-charm the public eye. In Ziegler’s own

words: “Experiment is an important element in art, but it must be based

on continuity rather than on a violent break with all that has gone

before.” (Archibald Ziegler, quoted by John Jacobson, ‘A Hampstead

Heath Centenary Exhibition / Archibald Ziegler,’


To see full catalogue visit :

/download/Archibald_Ziegler.pdf


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