Lecture: Arthur Szyk’s Cover Art for Collier’s Magazine
October 19 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Fairfield University Art Museum, Bellarmine Hall, 200 Barlow Rd.
Fairfield, CT 06824 United States
Deborah Varat, PhD, presents the lecture “How Arthur Szyk’s Cover Art for Collier’s Magazine Helped Americans Visualize the Evil of Fascism.” Varat is a Professor of Art History and Director of the Public Humanities Initiative at Southern New Hampshire University.
We invite you to join the conversation via the following options:
1. In-person in the Diffley Board Room, on the first floor of Bellarmine Hall (registration required-limited seating!)
2. Virtual via thequicklive.com
This event is presented as part of the Edwin L. Wiesel Jr. Lectureships in Art History, funded by the Robert Lehman Foundation and in conjunction with the exhibition “In Real Times – Arthur Szyk: Artist and Soldier for Human Rights,” on view in the Bellarmine Hall Galleries from September 29-December 16, 2023.
Don’t miss “Szyk: The Interactive Experience” in the Walsh Gallery in the Quick Center for the Arts.
About the exhibition:
This special exhibition, organized around the theme of human rights features more than 50 works by acclaimed Polish Jewish miniaturist and political cartoonist Arthur Szyk (1899-1951), including political cartoons, and images that honor the power and importance of democratic ideals. A witness to the rise of totalitarianism in Europe, Szyk emigrated from London to America at the beginning of World War II. He lived and worked in Connecticut, and passed away in New Canaan in 1951. His powerful political cartoons animated the covers of magazines such as Time and Collier’s, raising awareness of the plight of European Jews and helping sway public opinion toward support for American participation in the Second World War. As a self-described “soldier in art,” Szyk’s work was acclaimed by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt as a potent weapon “against Hitlerism.” He advocated for religious tolerance, racial equality, and human dignity. Active in the years leading up to World War II and during the Holocaust, Szyk became one of America’s most celebrated political artists for his powerful artistic and social contributions against Nazism and fascism. As our communities continue to confront issues of structural racism and social upheaval — including the sharp rise in antisemitic rhetoric and violence across the United States— this exhibition provides a platform for conversations on the urgent topics of human rights and social justice.
Image: Arthur Szyk, detail from “The Silent Partner ‘In this game, Adolph, two aces is more than three kings.’,” 1939, watercolor, gouache, ink and graphite on paper, Taube Family Arthur Szyk Collection, The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, University of California, Berkeley.