The Kaplan Centre presents two online exhibitions:
This exhibition explores the links between the ethnic origins, institutions and values that informed the early lives and socialisation of Jewish radicals. It investigates why they were drawn to the SACP, and ultimately tries to determine the extent to which ethnic experiences, sentiments, institutions, and solidarities underlay their political support for the SACP.
The exhibition is an exploration of ethnicity in a space where it was explicitly denied — it is an exploration of ethnicity in radical politics.
Born in Transylvania (now part of Romania) Herman Wald found refuge in South Africa in 1937. One of eight children of Rabbi Jacob Meir Wald, his artistic talent was recognised early and he studied and worked in Budapest, Vienna, Berlin, Paris and London.
Although his talent and ability was appreciated in Europe as a distinguished representative of 20th century modernism, he has received surprisingly little recognition in this country. Despite participating in numerous group and solo exhibitions and being awarded important commissions, including the Impala fountain and the Yom Hashoah Memorial at Park Cemetery in Johannesburg, he is relatively unknown both to the Jewish public and the art cognoscenti.
The online exhibition aims to draw additional and lasting attention to the life and work of this exceptional artist. It provides a coherent and chronological overview seen within the perspective of his time on the art historical map together with an interpretation of his work. He can now be allotted his rightful place both in the history of 20th century art and within South African historiography.