Bernard Schottlander (b.1924) was known as a designer before he gained recognition as a sculptor. One of the many German Jewish immigrants to Britain, arriving at the onset of war, his early training as a welder and plater was supplemented by evening classes in sculpture at Leeds College of Art. While maintaining this interest Schottlander went on to study industrial design at the Central School of Arts and Crafts in London before setting up a small business manufacturing his own designs. The simple forms and primary colours of his sophisticated designs appealed to post-war architects and throughout the 1950s his work was included in the Council of Industrial Design's 'Design Review'. Schottlander produced ash trays for the National Theatre, chairs and lamps. His Evening Standard news-stands were used for decades - instant classics which soon became ubiquitous. Despite this recognition, in 1963 Schottlander made a switch to becoming a full-time sculptor and had his first solo show at the Architectural Association, London in 1964. Numerous public commissions followed and now his work can be seen all over Britain, from the University of Warwick to London and Milton Keynes.
In the first retrospective of Bernard Schottlander's work since his death in 1999, this exhibition will explore the overlaps between his sculpture and design, tracing how the elegant interior forms of his furniture and fittings were transposed into public sculpture. By taking his work outside, into the plazas created by the high-rise office blocks of the post-war years, he created a type of urban furniture which evolved from his work indoors. Drawing on the Henry Moore Institute Archive and the University of Brighton Design Archives, this exhibition will feature largely unknown design and sculptural work and offers the opportunity to compare his output in both disciplines. The display also documents Schottlander's role in the debate which raged during the late 1960s about the appropriate form and settings for public sculptures and culminated in Peter Stuyvesant's 1972 City Sculpture Project to which Schottlander contributed.
This exhibition highlights the dialogue between Schottlander's interior design skills and his interest in outdoor sculpture, this overlap between fine art and decoration is simultaneously on show in the main galleries in an exhibition of Thomas Schütte's early work.
This exhibition tours to The University of Brighton Art Gallery 14 January - 9 February 2008.