Aberdam, Alfred

Concert, 1930s
Concert, 1930s, oil on canvas, 50 x 73,5 cm

Aberdam, Alfred, Polish painter, member of the “Munich School”. 1913-14: student at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts/Akademie der Bildenden Künste München. *15.4.1894 Lemberg/Lwów (today Lviv), †3.12.1963 Paris. On the 28.10.1913 he enrols in the drawing class at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Munich; studies under Gabriel von Hackl (1843-1926). As a soldier in the First World War, he is imprisoned by the Russians and taken to a camp in Siberia. 1921-22: studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków/Akademia Sztuk Pięknych w Krakowie under Teodor Axentowicz (1859-1938), 1922-23 under Alexander Archipenko (1887-1964) in Berlin. From 1923 onwards he lives in Paris, with short breaks elsewhere. 1933: joins the Warsaw artists’ association Plastycy Nowocześni. – In Paris Aberdam’s style is influenced by the École de Paris, initially cubist. Along with Zygmut Menkes, Joachim Weingart and Leon Weissberg he makes up the Group of Four/Grupy Czeterech. 1925: a group exhibition in the Jan Śliwiński gallery, Au Sacre du Printemps. But Aberdam is mostly influenced by Frecnh and Italian painting from the 17th and 18th century, especially Antoine Watteau and Alessandro Magnasco, and henceforth paints genre scenes in a fantastic, grotesque, visionary and romanticising manner. This makes him a reputation after the end of the Second World War. His works can be found in the National Museum in Kraków/Muzeum Narodowe w Krakowie, in the National Museum in Warsaw/Muzeum Narodowe w Warszawie and in the homes of the artist’s family in Paris and Detroit.


Solo exhibitions: 1929 Paris, Galerie Granoff / 1932 Lemberg, Museum of Arts and Crafts / 1949 Paris, Galerie des Beaux-Arts (Retrospective) / 1949, 1962 Tel Aviv, Museum / 1952 Jerusalem, Bezalel-Museum; Haifa, city museum / 1970 Geneva, Petit Palais.

Further Reading: Saur Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon, vol. 1, Munich/Leipzig 1992, p. 130; Halina Stępień/Maria Liczbińska: Artyści polscy w środowisku monachijskim w latach 1828-1914. Materiały źródłowe, Warsaw 1994, p. 27

Online: Matriculation data base, Matriculation book 3, Academy of Fine Arts Munich, 05290 Alfred Aberdam, http://matrikel.adbk.de/matrikel/mb_1884-1920/jahr_1913/matrikel-05290


Axel Feuß, March 2017