- [191-?]-[198-] (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
239 photographs (prints, slides, negatives)
1 photograph album
1 photograph album
Name of creator
Gershon Iskowitz (1921-1988) was an abstract painter based in Toronto for much of his artistic career. Born in Kielce, Poland, he survived internment in Nazi concentration camps and lost his entire family in the Holocaust. Iskowitz studied art in Munich at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in 1947, soon transferring to private studies with Oskar Kokoschka. He moved to Toronto in 1949. His work developed from wartime imagery to a focus on landscapes (particularly inspired by practice in the Parry Sound area), eventually arriving at his mature abstract expressionist style in 1967. Iskowitz began exhibiting with Gallery Moos in 1964, a relationship which continued throughout his career. He taught at the New School (Toronto) from 1967-1970, and his informal mentoring of artists in Toronto is often noted. Iskowitz, along with Walter Redinger, represented Canada at the Venice Biennale in 1972. The artist established the Gershon Iskowitz Foundation in 1985, with the mandate of awarding the Gershon Iskowitz Prize to a mature practising artist; since 2007 the Foundation has partnered with the Art Gallery of Ontario to administer the Gershon Iskowitz Prize at the AGO.
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
Content and structure area
Scope and content
Series consists of photographs of Iskowitz’s family; images of Kielce, Poland; portraits of the artist and images of his studio; photographs of exhibition openings; and images of art works. Series includes one album, largely empty, containing photographs of Iskowitz from the mid-late 1940s. Series also includes a hand-crafted book of matches, the cover of which is made from photographs of a group seated at a banquet table (perhaps at the 1972 Venice Biennale?).
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling
No further accruals are expected.
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use area
Conditions governing access
Open. Access to Special Collections is by appointment only. Please contact the reference desk for more information.
Conditions governing reproduction
Various copyright holders. It is the researcher’s responsibility to obtain permission to publish any part of the fonds/collection.
Language of material
Script of material
Language and script notes
Physical characteristics and technical requirements
Allied materials area
Existence and location of originals
Existence and location of copies
Related units of description
Physical condition: Photograph album is in poor condition and is missing a majority of its photographs.
Subject access points
Place access points
Name access points
- Iskowitz, Gershon, 1921-1988 (Creator)
Genre access points
Description control area
Edward P. Taylor Library and Archives, Art Gallery of Ontario
Rules and/or conventions used
Level of detail
Dates of creation revision deletion
Originally prepared in 2009