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Biographical/Historical Information

The art historian and journalist [Dr.jur.] Alfred Werner was born as Alfred Siegfried Weintraub in Vienna, Austria on March 31, 1911. He was active in Vienna’s literary scene, editing the newspapers ‘Gerechtigkeit’ and ‘Die Stimme’, while also publishing his own poetry. Werner was arrested by the Nazis on November 10, 1938, and sent to the Dachau concentration camp, but he was released in March 1939, through the efforts of his fiancée, Dr. Gertrude Bach. The couple escaped to England, spending a year at the British Kitchener Camp, and then immigrated to the United States. In New York City, Werner found success in political journalism, and over the next fifteen years published hundreds of articles on European, Jewish, and Zionist affairs. By the 1960s he was writing nearly exclusively about art and artists, primarily focused on Modern Art in Europe, America, and Israel with an emphasis on Jewish artists. Werner also wrote over twenty books, including works on artists such as Chagall, Utrillo, Pascin, Modigliani, Gaugin, and Degas. Alfred Werner died July 14, 1979.

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Alfred Werner, Leo Baeck Institute, F 3489.