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Artwork by migrants from across three centuries to be exhibited at the Museum of Gloucester

All Areas > Entertainment > Art

Author: Thomas Hadfield, Posted: Monday, 7th October 2019, 11:20

The portrait of Wilhelm Hollitscher by Hugo Dachinger The portrait of Wilhelm Hollitscher by Hugo Dachinger

A partnership between Gloucestershire Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers (GARAS) and the Museum of Gloucester will see a major exhibition from the Ben Uri Collection to the city.

‘Migrations: Masterworks’ is on display at the museum from Wednesday 2nd October 2019 to Tuesday 28th January 2020.

The exhibition’s appearance in Gloucester marks two significant migrant anniversaries – the twentieth year of GARAS, and the introduction of the Kindertransport, which brought around 10,000 Jewish refugee children to Britain between December 1938 and September 1939.

The Ben Uri Gallery and Museum was founded in London’s East End in 1915 by Jewish Eastern-European artisans, who went on to form a significant collection of works by artists of British and European Jewish descent.

Since 2000, the museum’s remit has expanded to include works by immigrants from a wide range of cultural, religious and geographical backgrounds.

There’s a special connection that brings the Ben Uri collection to Gloucester in GARAS’ 20th year, in that the poster used to advertise the exhibition features a relative of one of the trustees, Sue Oppenheimer.

Sue’s engineer grandfather Wilhelm Hollitscher migrated to Britain from Vienna in 1940, and entries in his diary speak of being painted by another migrant, Hugo Dachinger.

After some detective work, Sue’s family found the portrait in Ben Uri Gallery and Museum collection, and plans were made to bring the exhibition to the city.

GARAS director, Adele Owen, says it’s a “huge coup” to bring the exhibition to Gloucester.

“The family link with one of our trustees, Sue, makes having this collection of artwork so much more special.

“It brings the exhibition bang up to date and makes a deep connection with the work we do at GARAS. It’s a fantastic opportunity and we’re thrilled.”

Councillor Steve Morgan, Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure, added: “This exhibition brings the faces of those who experienced much hardship into wider public knowledge. We mustn’t forget what has happened in the past, to learn for the future, and this incredibly moving exhibition helps to remind us of these lessons.

“It is also wonderful to bring Sue’s grandfather’s portrait here to the county she lives in, and we’re so grateful to the Ben Uri Gallery and Museum for working with us to host the collection.”

For more information on the exhibition visit www.museumofgloucester.co.uk

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