Henry Moore Institute, Leeds
Egon Altdorf (1922–2008) was one of three prize-winners in the German competition for the Monument to the Unknown Political Prisoner, and went on to achieve success as a printmaker, graphic artist and interior designer as well as a sculptor.
Altdorf held strong Catholic beliefs and often made work on Christian religious subjects. One of his most significant projects was designing the interior scheme for the new synagogue in Wiesbaden, built to replace the synagogue destroyed in Kristallnacht in 1939, and now widely regarded as an important example of post-war religious architecture.
This display will focus on the work Altdorf produced immediately following his entry to the competition to design the Monument to the Unknown Political Prisoner in 1952 and his subsequent visit to the UK in 1953, which he described as the most important event in his creative development.
The display will feature three of Altdorf’s steel sculptures, along with a selection of his woodcuts and prints. These show both the strength of Altdorf’s design and printmaking skills, and the clear influence of the British artists he met during his time in the UK.