Roman Halter: Life and Art Through Stained Glass11. Apr - 8. Jun 14 / ended Ben Uri Gallery and Museum, London: Art, Identity, Migration
Monday 1-5.30, Tuesday-Friday 10-5.30, Sunday 12-4, Closed Saturday
‘LIFE AND ART THROUGH STAINED GLASS’ examines the artistic career of architect, painter, designer and stained glass innovator Roman Halter.
Halter is best known and remembered as a survivor of the Holocaust (the Shoah) who channelled his relentless energy to ensure that young people, regardless of background, recognised and understood the extent of the evil and genocide of the past and the frightening but persistent reality of the potential for repetition.
The exhibition, featuring over 70 works, includes examples of his stained glass and preparatory ‘cartoons’, revealing that Halter used his architectural skills and the intricacies of stained glass as the foundation and structure for his paintings and drawings.
Halter’s stained glass designs are as much about the symbolic as the aesthetic qualities of light. The exhibition celebrates a remarkable man devoted to the design of pure colour and light in spite of the darkest childhood experiences – life and art through stained glass.
Halter was born in 1927 in Chodecz, a small village in northern Poland, and was the seventh and youngest child of a traditional Jewish family. At the outbreak of war, in 1939, when Halter was 12, the family were deported to the infamous Lodz Ghetto, some 50 miles away. It was during the horrors of this imprisonment that his grandfather, a constant companion and mentor during these early and most influential years, made Halter promise to tell the story of the Holocaust ‘when’ and not ‘if’ he survived. His grandfather’s entreaty was a frequent refrain throughout Halter’s long career as an artist and narrator of the atrocities he experienced and to which he himself bore witness, to which this exhibition is a further tribute.
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