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June 27, 2003 - Image 77

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-06-27

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A Lifetime In Art

A retrospective of the work of Holocaust survivor
and former Michigander Vera Sattler goes on
display at U-M Dearborn.


"I found glass more exciting and
fun," she says.
Allowed to immigrate to the United
utterflies, a stained glass
States, Sattler settled in Michigan and
window completed in the
practiced the techniques she studied
1980s by Vera Sattler for
in Europe. Earning a bachelor's degree
the University of
from Wayne State University, she was
Michigan's Dearborn
employed by the now-
campus, soon will be
closed Detroit Stained
joined by many more
Glass Works and took
examples of the artist's
on assignments from
interior designers and
The pieces will be part
private collectors.
of "Artists in the
Sattler enjoyed restor-
Collection: Vera Sattler,"
ing glass as well as cre-
an exhibit on view July
ating original architec-
2-25 in the Alfred
tural pieces for regional
Berkowitz Gallery at the
clients. She offered cus-
Mardigian Library. The
tomized approaches
display is among a series
with leaded, faceted,
Vera Sattler: "Fish," kiln
that individually features formed, slumped and fused slumped and fused
the projects of artists rep- glass. "I have made more
resented in the universi-
Her talents gained
than 500 fish, and each
ty's collection.
at various
one is di erent," says the
Sattler, who lived in
and out-
Michigan for 35 years
side the state. Habatat
before moving to
Galleries, the
Florida shortly after
University of Detroit
Butterflies was finished,
and the Museum
will showcase her talents
Shop of the Orlando
using glass, enamels on
Museum of Art have
copper, collage materials
been among many
and watercolors on
places that have fea-
tured her changing
"Some of the pieces
will be on loan from
"I became a multi-
people who bought
media artist and
them from me, while
learned to do just
Vera Sattler: 'Analysis er
others will be very new
anything," says
Synthesis," painting in
works," says Sattler, 73,
who has
whose pieces regularly
taught at St. Clair
are shown at the Detroit
College in Canada
Gallery of Contemporary Crafts in
and the Birmingham Bloomfield Art
the Fisher Building.
"It's been wonderful to turn my
"I liked living in Michigan, but the
imagination loose. I keep up with all
.winters got to me. I sent out applica-
the art magazines and so far haven't
tions for work in warmer climates and
seen anybody doing anything similar
happened to get an offer for a job
to what I do."
teaching design in Brevard County,
Sattler, a Holocaust survivor saved
where I live now."
by a false identity, began experiment-
Although Sattler moved to Florida,
ing with art before World War II.
she couldn't accept the position.
Afterward, while living in Germany,
Environmental allergies made her very
she was given a choice of learning
ill at the time, and recovery was a
how to design and paint stained glass
long process. Not able to give up her
or process photographs, and she
art, Sattler worked with materials that
decided on glass.
were not irritating.

Special to the Jewish News

A widow with grown children on
their own, Sattler keeps a studio in
her home so that she can devote most
of her day to artistry. Her daughter,
Ann, is a librarian at the University of
Nevada, and her son, Leon, is a rabbi
in Jerusalem.
An annual trip to Michigan has
long been on Sattler's agenda. This
time it will be for the opening of her
exhibit, which will include Moonrocks
II, kiln-formed glass with enamels
and fine silver foil on brass and black
acrylic; Queentriggerfish, turquoise
glass enamel with gold ornamentation
on coral rock; and Table of Three, a
watercolor image of birds in unusual
architectural settings.
"My work for synagogues has been
especially meaningful for me," says
"I used glass to depict the last two
days of creation for Congregation
Beth Ahm in Southfield, and I did a
Shabbat theme in glass for
Congregation Beth Tephilath Moses
in Mount Clemens."
The artist has used copper in com-
pleting ark doors for synagogues in
Florida. "I've designed thousands of
square feet for synagogues, churches
and public buildings," she says.
"Right now, I'm having a two-
month show at the Brevard Art
Center and Museum in Melbourne,
Fla., with four other glass artists who
have very different approaches."
Sattler currently has two focal
points for her work. One is fish made
out of glass, and the second is art
deco ladies made with glass and other
"I have made more than 500 fish,
and each one is different," she says.
"Each fish has a serial number to
indicate that it is one of a kind. The
art deco ladies are made up of several
layers of glass and mounted on wood,
brass or metals. All are hand painted
and kiln fired with lots of beads.
"My art is my life. I wake up to it
and go to sleep to it. I'm so full of
ideas and plans that I could use
another lifetime to do all of it."

"Artists in the Collection: Vera
Sattler" will be on view July 2-25
in the Alfred Berkowitz Gallery
at the Mardigian Library on the
campus of the University of
Michigan-Dearborn. An artist's
reception will run 5-7 p.m.
Tuesday, July 2. Gallery hours are
9 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays. (313)



The name "Ilan"
means tree.

Before he died, astronaut Ilan
Ramon of Israel sent the fol-
lowing message back to

"I call upon every Jew in the
world to plant a tree in the land
of Israel during the coming
year: I would like to see 13 or
14 million new trees planted in
Israel exactly one year from
now, on the anniversary of the

—Ilan Ramon

To plant a tree in Israel

1 in honor of Ilan Ramon and

his fellow astronauts, go to

www.jewish.com .

Click on Donations to Israel.




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