Szyk (1894-1951) Polish-born graphic artist, book illustrator, caricaturist
and stage designer. Born in £ód¼, he lived and worked mainly in France,
Poland and United Kingdom, finally settling permanently in the United States
in 1940. Wherever he lived and worked, Szyk always regarded himself both
as a Pole and a Jew.
known for his World War II anti-Nazi political art and widely beloved masterpieces:
Haggadah, and Statute of Kalisz, Szyk revived the medieval tradition
of the art of illumination.
A master of miniature painting
and calligraphy, Szyk brought his unmistakable style to subjects as diverse
as biblical stories, literary classics, and political caricature and cartoons.
Many of his works were published as limited edition fine art books and
as editorials in periodicals such as Collier's, TIME, and
New York Post.
A self-described "soldier
in art," Szyk was a committed activist-artist, advocating religious tolerance
and racial equality for minorities, especially for Jews and black Americans.
Today, collectors around
the globe prize Szyk's art for its vibrant imagery and messages, which
remain as stunning and timely as ever.
Acquired in 1976 by Rare
Books and Special Collections, McGill University, The Norman Friedman collection
of Arthur Szyk works comprises 55 titles including the Haggadah
(1939, one of 125 copies), 13 drawings and eleven boxes of illustrations,
ephemera and various other material.
Copies of Szyk's works are
also found in the Saul Shapiro and the Joe Fishstein collections of
Rare Books and Special Collections.