About: Avigdor Stematsky
Avigdor Stematzky was born in Odessa in 1908. In 1921 he immigrated with his family to Israel. In 1926 he was accepted to Bezalel school of Art where he studied alongside Arie Aroch, Moshe Castel, Yechezkel Shtreichman and others. In 1929 he began studying in Itzhak Frenkel's "Studiya" of painting which focused on the values of modernism and highlighted the use of color as a central artistic value. In 1930 he went to Paris for a year. During that period he was highly influenced by the school of Paris and hi paintings were done mainly in oils, heavy colors, warm and rich, the subject mostly figurative, emphasizing landscapes and portraits.
On his return to Israel, he founded the 'Massad' group and in 1939 had a solo exhibition in the Tel Aviv Museum. From the early 1940's and into the 1950's Stematzky was one of the main artists who developed a lyrical abstract art. During this time he established the "Studiya" school with Yechezkel Shtreichman and they were both one of the founding members of "New Horizons", where Stematzky was a prominent figure. In these years he mainly painted in light pastel watercolors, with a few appearances of bright color and with time figurative paintings turned into
abstract and then into full abstraction. In the late 1950's, 1960's and 70's his art became abstract although some figurative hints still appeared. He incorporated more and more light and translucent oil colors together with watercolors.
In the early 1970's another element was evident in his paintings, oil pastels, painting with them over watercolors, and over them with oil colors, the oil pastels serving as a binding layer between the watercolors and the oils. Stematzky won several prizes for his art: Dizengoff prize for art and sculpture (1941, 1956), first prize in Tower of David exhibition, Jerusalem (1967), Meir Sherman prize from the Israel Museum (1973), Sandberg prize for Israeli art from the Israel Museum (1976) and more.