Arieh Merzer (1905-1966)
Copper relief artist the late Arieh Merzer was born in Warsaw in 1905 to an extensive Hasidic family. He graduated from the Warsaw Academy of Art where he studied under Professor Adam Richtarski, and later worked with a group of Jewish artists who sought to revive the ancient Eastern - Jewish art of metal beating (metalloplastics), which had been passed down through the generations from Bible times. In 1928, Merzer exhibited his work for the first time in Warsaw and from 1930 he lived and worked in Paris. He was a member of the group of Jewish artists who gathered in Paris and who became known as the Jewish "Paris School". in 1943, with the Nazi occupation of France, Merzer escaped from a concentration camp and following a period with the partisans, he crossed the border to Switzerland where he was put into a labor camp. He later reached Geneva, where his first album of works was published. In 1945 he emigrated to Palestina with his family, settled in Safed and was one of the founders of the artists quarter. His works are to be found in collections and museums all over the world.

chnukia  by merzer

The history of copper hammering
The first copper hammer mentioned in the Bible is Bezalel Ben - Uri Ben - Hur of the tribe of Judah. Bezalel was appointed by Moses to lead the craftsmen who worked in the Temple and on its artifacts. The Hebrew name "Bezalel" (in the shadow of the Almighty) hints at a closeness to the divine and thus he was familiar with the sublime Temple, according to which he designed the earthly Temple with the copper altar at its center. In recognition of his work on the Temple and its artifacts, Bezalel became known as the man who knew how "to fashion letters in which Heaven and Earth were created" (Tractate Berachot)

arieh merzer at work

Do you possess a Merzer copper relief?
If you posses a silver or copper relief, or any other work by Arieh Merzer, we would be grateful if you would send us an e-mail in which please tell us if you have a copper relief, silver relief, drawing, aquarelle, oil painting, or piece of jewelry, its details: dimensions, subject, and how and where it was acquired. If you would be happy for your work to be photographed and printed in a book of research and art reviewing Merzer's work. And if you would be happy for our representative to contact you.

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