The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings


Where are the Paul Feiler tiles on YRM buildings?

Went to the new Jerwood Gallery in Hastings yesterday (great on the inside, excellent crab sandwiches, didn’t spend that much time contemplating the context as it was decidely wet, and crazy golf beckoned). Loved two 1950s abstracts by an artist I’d not remembered coming across before– Paul Feiler.   I bought a post card of one, Chrome and Lemon, 1956, which I can’t upload but you can see here:  However I can share  the one above right which is called Crossed Forms, 1958, and is apparently on the wall of the staff common room at the University of Warwick Medical School–lucky them.

Paul Feiler was born in 1918, in Frankfurt, came to England in 1933 and studied at the Slade from1936 to 1939. He was interned in Canada at the outbreak of war, but returned to Britain in 1941.    He first visited Cornwall in 1949 and in 1953 bought the chapel at Kerris, near Paul, Newlyn from artist Stanhope Forbes, and subsequently lived there with his wife, the painter, Catherine Armitage.

His work shows the influnce of the St Ives group of artists, and he is also compared to Nicholas de Stael.  The most fascinating thing, as far as I am concerned is that he made ceramic wall tiles (or possibly murals) for the architects Yorke, Rosenberg, Mardall(from 1957-1963).  Apparently these were installed  in several buildings in London and at the Londonderry Hospital, Northern Ireland.

I’ve no idea what these look like– –anyone know if they survive?

PS the photo on the left of the new gallery is taken by Ioana Marinescu, who photographed Robin Hood Gardens for us.  The gallery building is by Hat Projects and is itself clad in hand-glazed ceramic tiles, which were looking good in the rain.


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