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Artists As Hybrids: A Talk by Stephen Duncan

11 April 2022 6:00 pm

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Image: Stephen Duncan, Waiting for the Wind, 1995

Stephen Duncan FRSS will be talking about his career as a sculptor in both the UK and Italy. Stephen is the son of poet Beata Duncan and grandson of the Weimar playwright Hans Rehfisch, both born in Berlin and refugees from Germany in the 1930s.

Stephen trained at the University of the Arts, London, the Royal Academy of Arts, London and the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome. However, he began his career as an artist in his early teens when he turned his bedroom into a studio and became an assistant to several sculptors including Michael Werner and Gertrude Hermes. He will be talking about Michael Werner, Willi Soukop and Riccardo Priulli Bon, all of whom were refugees and émigrés in London and all of whom were interned as ‘enemy aliens’ in 1940.

In keeping with the themes of the Insiders/Outsiders project, Stephen will be discussing the contribution these three ‘enemy aliens’ made to British culture and education by introducing the visual cultures of Germany, Austria and Italy and how this gave rise to a ‘hybrid’ of influences on sculptors working in the UK after WW2. In looking at his own work Stephen will describe how he feels he is a product of a European tradition as much as of British sculpture and how Modernism in the UK and its success can be seen as emerging from these cross-cultural energies.

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11 April 2022
6:00 pm
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