Mother and Children in Holland Park
This gorgeous treasure is a 1997 painting by Dora Holzhandler from the Ben Uri Archive. Holzhandler was a Polish-Jewish artist born to working class parents in Paris in 1928. In 1934 her family moved to Britain, where Holzhandler lived for the rest of her life.
Gorgeous colours, intricate textiles and a Pre-Raphaelite attention to detail animate this parkland paradise. Although the mother and child is a recognised Christian symbol, the presence of a second child widens the scope to evoke the warm intimacy of family life. Holzandler’s work is influenced by her belief in both Jewish and Buddhist religions and incorporates mystical and religious symbolism.
The painting was part of the Ben Uri Gallery’s 2018 exhibition Liberators: Extraordinary women artists from the Ben Uri Collection. The exhibition features many lesser-known British Jewish artists whose work often depicts everyday life in Britain.
Hidden Treasures: Celebrating the documents, photos and artefacts in British archives that tell the story of Jews in Britain