The Georgia Museum of Art is presenting The Life and Work of Alice Fischer, Cultural Pioneer through March 8. The exhibition features selections of ceramic jewelry and works on paper by the former UGA professor.
Born in Vienna to a Jewish family, Alice Fischer (1907-2004) was an artist and designer who immigrated to the U.S. by way of France and Morocco to escape the Nazi regime. Fischer arrived in New York in 1941 and found work in a French silk house, but she soon left her job and began experimenting with ceramics. Her experiments led to the design and handmade production of unique ceramic buttons and jewelry, which she sold throughout the U.S. However, Fischer’s jewelry production diminished when she enrolled in Columbia University’s doctoral program in art history and ceased completely in 1963 when she began teaching.
This exhibition serves as an introduction to Fischer’s jewelry and other works of art and includes Fischer’s “History of Fashion” necklace, a particularly intricate work that highlights her skills as a jewelry maker and painter. Other works on view include Fischer’s early watercolors of southern France alongside some of her later drawings and etchings. The exhibition addresses potential influences on Fischer’s work—including the works of Jewish modernist Marc Chagall and Fischer’s interest in early Christian art—as well as issues of identity.
“Fischer’s work deserves a larger audience,” said Mary Koon, independent curator. “And the Georgia Museum of Art is honored to have the opportunity to display this tribute to her life and career, especially given the decade she spent teaching here at the Lamar Dodd School of Art.”
The exhibition is on view in the Boone and George-Ann Knox Gallery II and is sponsored by the W. Newton Morris Charitable Foundation and the Friends of the Georgia Museum of Art.