Join us as Steven Less, son of the artist, and art historian Hannah-Lea Wasserfuhr speak about the Berlin born artist and his flight, with his parents and sister, from Nazi persecution to Shanghai in 1940. Crowded into the Hongkew Ghetto with the “stateless” among some 20,000 other Jewish refugees in Shanghai, they lived in immediate proximity to the roughly 100,000 impoverished Chinese who already inhabited the district. From here, Less was able to help support his family as a commercial artist working for established advertising studios located in the International Settlement.
Utilizing the limited supplies at hand, he also kept a visual record of his refugee existence – mostly as rough sketches. In the summer of 1947, the family was able to immigrate to the United States, where Less continued working as a commercial artist. At the same time, he further developed his independent artwork, including watercolor drawings and oil paintings about his experience in Shanghai.
If you are traveling, or like to travel virtually, we invite you to discover the Berlin Grunewald neighborhood, where Fritz Ascher survived persecution by the German Nazi regime, and continued living until the end of his life. This German language tour puts Fritz Ascher’s experience into a larger historical context, features Fritz Ascher’s artwork and juxtaposes historical and contemporary photography. Thank you, Martina Weinland of the Fritz Ascher Foundation at Stadtmuseum Berlin for creating this amazing new resource!