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[BKARTS] Justice Illuminated: The Art of Arthur Szyk at South Florida's Jaffe Center for Book Arts



Book Arts & Letterpress Folks:

Florida Atlantic University's Jaffe Center for Book Arts and FAU's Wimberly Library present our new library-wide exhibition: "JUSTICE ILLUMINATED: The Art of Arthur Szyk," now through December 30, 2007.

Arthur Szyk (1894-1951) could be classified as one of the greatest book illuminators of all time... only he was working in this style in the early Twentieth Century. He was, as well, one of the best known political artists of the WWII era. Szyk advocated tirelessly for social justice and civil liberties and was known as "Franklin Roosevelt's Soldier in Art."

Arthur Szyk was born in Lodz, Poland to Jewish parents. His devotion to Poland and to the Jewish people are common themes in his work, but he also developed a rich appreciation for American themes, and this informed his work even before he emigrated to this country and received his American citizenship in 1948.

Working mostly in pen and ink and gouaches, his artwork and illuminations are richly and astoundingly detailed. They must be seen up close to be truly appreciated, and thanks to Alexandra Bracie, Mr. Szyk's daughter, who lent us original works from her collection, we are offering you this rare opportunity.

Begin your Arthur Szyk experience at the Wimberly Library's main lobby with a traveling exhibition on Szyk's life and history. Then, come up to the Jaffe Center for Book Arts to see Szyk's original illuminations and some of the many books he illustrated, including "The Haggadah" (London, 1934) printed on vellum, as well as other famous Szyk books like "Le Puits de Jacob" (Paris, 1927), with its beautiful flapper-era miniature illuminations, and "The Canterbury Tales" (New York, 1935).

Most of the illuminations on display are the originals that were used for book illustrations. To see the folds of fabric that Szyk created with his pens and brushes (some brushes he used had just two or three hairs) will take your breath away. The exhibition also includes those same tools that Mr. Szyk used to create his artwork, as well as family photographs and much of his political work, too, for magazines like "Time" and "Collier's." Szyk was particularly disturbed by the Nazi invasion of Poland, and also on display in our exhibition is "The New Order," (New York, 1941) one of the first books of political cartoons published that attacked the Nazi regime.

The political cartoons are powerful, the illuminations are beautiful. They will move you, and we invite you to come by and have a close look. The Jaffe Book Arts Gallery, located inside the Jaffe Center for Book Arts, is open Monday through Friday, 10:00am to 4:00pm. Just ring the bell for entry, or call (561-297-0226) or email me for an appointment. The rest of the exhibition, throughout the Wimberly Library, may be viewed anytime during regular library hours, posted here:

http://www.library.fau.edu/geninfo/hours.htm#boca


Hope to see you here for this fascinating exhibition! John

John Cutrone
Programs Coordinator
The Arthur & Mata Jaffe Center for Book Arts
Florida Atlantic University Wimberly Library
777 Glades Road
Boca Raton, Florida 33431
http://www.jaffecollection.org

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