If you want art that really showcases worldwide influences from the last few decades, Alexander Sadlo’s abstract pieces are worth looking at.
The 95-year-old has been creating paintings, collages, enamels, and jewellery for around 70 years, taking inspiration from his time spent in Eastern Europe, Australia and the UK.
To understand the beauty behind Sadlo’s work, it is important to start from the beginning.
Early life of Sadlo
The self-taught artist was born in Czechoslovakia, as it was known at the time, in 1927. He is thought to have shown talent from an early age, and enrolled in the Prague School of Graphic Art.
Here, he wanted to learn more about printing techniques, life drawing, art history and different forms of design. However, he was expelled in 1949 after the communist takeover, due to his opposing political views.
Following this, he escaped to a refugee camp in Salzburg, before he managed to emigrate to Australia.
He settled in Adelaide on the east coast and remained Down Under for 22 years, creating a new life for himself outside of Europe.
Spearheaded Australia’s contemporary art movement
After a few years settling into Aussie life, he turned to art again by creating works in his garden shed when he had the time.
Eventually, people started to take an interest and Sadlo became one of the first members of the contemporary art movement in Adelaide.
Despite this, Sadlo found it difficult to sell his large and colourful paintings, as he was keen on creating semi-abstract pictures and collages in various media. By this point, he had been inspired by original aboriginal art, as well as his own artistic instinct.
Unable to sell his works, he tried his hand at jewellery making, creating contemporary rings and trinkets on miniature enamels, and carving opals and stones.
Expanded jewellery collections on his return to Europe
Having married his wife Gaynor in 1972, the pair decided to travel back to Europe. The pair settled in England where Alex continued to work his magic producing jewellery, enamels and paintings.
During the 1980s and 1990s, the artist managed to exhibit in countries all over the world, including France, Japan, the Czech Republic, as well as England and Australia.
He has even exhibited with the Royal Society of Miniature Painters and Gravers in London and enjoyed several one-man exhibitions.
Indeed, many people were keen to see his ceramics, jewellery, vitreous enamel sculptures, and paintings, whatever they depicted.
Sadlo’s biggest strength is reproducing scenes of humans taking part in interesting activities, whether it is musicians playing instruments or mothers cradling their babies.
However, his ability to use ultra realism to recreate landscapes and portraits makes him one of the most versatile artists of the 21st and 20th centuries.
Now in his 90s, Sadlo has taken a step back from work. Fans, however, can still see some at Life The Gallery in Farnham, where large figurative paintings, big enamel works, ceramics and jewellery pieces are still being showcased.
Alexander Sadlo’s works of art deserve to be centre stage in any home, so consider taking any paintings you have to a framing shop in East London to find the right border for the bright and colourful picture.