Our latest Education Room display showcases some of the work of Leeds Jewish Artist, Joash Woodrow, kindly gifted to us by the Woodrow family.

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Thanks to the gift of his family, we can now proudly display Joash Woodrow’s unique style and tell his moving story.  Joash Woodrow was born into a large Polish-Jewish family in Leeds in 1927 and he attended Leeds College of Art. After a stint as an army cartographer, Woodrow studied painting and drawing at the Royal College of Art between 1950-53, alongside fellow students including Frank Auerbach and Peter Blake.  Sadly, after graduation, he suffered an emotional breakdown which forced him to return to his Chapel Allerton family home. Here, Woodrow continued painting prolifically, as a solitary recluse.

After years of virtual anonymity, Woodrow was ‘re-discovered’ around 2000, when he was forced to move out of his home due to ill health. Thousands of artworks were found when the house was cleared out and the layers of grime were brushed off. Woodrow even used hessian sacks and metal advertising boards as his ‘canvases’, as though he was compelled to produce art on whatever surface was available.

The first exhibition of Woodrow’s work was held in 2002 in Harrogate, soon followed by shows at Leeds Art Gallery, The Ben Uri and many others.

We’ve complemented Woodrow’s work with pieces by his Jewish Artist contemporaries, Kramer and Naviasky, so you can compare and contrast the distinct style of these three incredible artists.

Also on show are a few bronze sculptures from the University’s Art Collection by former Gregory Fellows in Sculpture. 2016 is the ‘Year of Textile’ in our Public Art project so we are looking forward to inviting more people on campus to enjoy the artwork dotted in and around the University.

Catch these few works on display from our collection between now and Saturday 19th March, 2016.