Israeli Sculptor and Painter 1932 – 2015
Menashe Kadishman was born in 1932. Kadishman is the son of Bilha Kadishman, a teacher and painter. Also, Ben Zion Kadishman, a sculptor and industrial worker from Ukraine who emigrated to Tel Aviv in the early 20s. At 15, he lost his father, so he left school to help his mother.
During the early 1960s, Kadishman enrolled at St Martin’s School of Art in London, a center for the New Generation of British sculptors led by Anthony Caro. He then moved to the Slade School of Art, where he studied with Reg Butler. By replacing bronze and stone with aluminium, glass and steel, Kadishman’s early sculpture, made in the 1950s, showed that British sculpture had evolved from figurative and mythical forms to abstract, industrial-influenced works in the 1960s.
Life in Britain,
Sculptor Kadishman faced many difficulties during his time in Britain, as he related in the 2011 book on his sculptures by Marc Scheps. Being Israeli without a British passport made him feel like an outsider among other artists and forced to withdraw from official exhibitions. However, it had a liberating effect as well, Since he said that these difficulties made him realize that his work comes directly from him. Without passports, permissions, or accepted notions. Regardless of whether he follows or doesn’t follow a certain trend, or whether he is influenced by or not influenced by a certain artist.
In 1965, he married Tamara Alferoff, a British psychotherapist, and they had two children, Ben and Maya. They separated in 1972 and he returned to Israel. In the years that followed, his career flourished in both Israel and internationally.
Although Kadishman produced a wide range of art, he remains best remembered as the sculptor and painter who introduced the sheep motif into fine-art domains like Minimalism, Conceptual Art, and Neo-Expressionism. This was due to his experience as a shepherd on a kibbutz in his youth. Menashe Kadishman died at 82 after producing a wide range of works blending art and non-art, often challenging audiences and surprising them.
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