Wilde (1905-1986) Born in London studied at Chelsea School of Art for seven years where he studied under Graham Sutherland and met Henry Moore , both became life long friends and advocates.
Zika and Lida Ascher, who produced artist-designed dress fabrics and scarves, were the first to commission an abstract expressionist fabric from Gerald Wilde in 1947, which captured all the excitement of "Jack the Dripper", just as his work was breaking onto the international scene.
screen printed silk twill crepe for Ascher textiles, printed by John Heathcoat & Co. with an abstract design in jewel colours of magenta, mauve, cerise, tangerine, orange, yellow, lemon, aquamarine, mid blue, all outlined in black, 32 in; 80 cm sq.
He was a member of the hard drinking post-war Soho coterie. During the WW2 he served with the Pioneer Corps. In 1941 he participated in the Manchester based Cotton Board's Designs for Textiles by Twelve Fine Artists which was organised as part of the wartime export drive, the first of many influential Cotton Board exhibitions including Britain Can Make It .Other artists who took part were Duncan Grant, Paul Nash, Hans Tisdall, Graham Sutherland and John Piper. Wilde produced this abstract expressionist design in 1947. One of his designs printed on silk was worn by the Queen when she was Princess Elizabeth on the Royal Tour in 1947. Zika and Lida Ascher were Czech refugees who arrived in London in 1933 and started to screen print fabrics which had been bought in. In 1942 they set up Ascher(London) Ltd, commissioned leading artists of the day to produce screen-print designs which they produced as limited edition artists' textiles, bringing art and fashion closer together. Matisse, Graham Sutherland, John Piper, Wilde and other well known artists produced printed fashion fabrics and scarves. Their markets were the more cultured home market and the export market. John Heathcoat & Co prided themselves on being manufacturers of modern textiles in silk and rayon. 33 Margaret Street, London W1. This scarf was used for their advertisement in The Ambassador no 1, 1947 p 64. This magazine was started by Hans and Elsbeth Juda.
John Heathcoat & Co, manufacturers of modern textiles in silk and rayon, 33 Margaret Street, London W1. The company advertised in The Ambassador, no 1, 1947 , p 64 with this scarf.
http://www.octobergallery.co.uk/artists/wilde/ Gerald Wilde 1905-1986, the October Gallery 1988
All images and text © meg-andrews.com 2019