Anna Ticho

1894Brno, Moravia (now Czech Republic) | 1980Jerusalem, Israel
Anna Ticho — AWARE Women artists / Femmes artistes

Portrait of Anna Ticho, Courtesy Anna Ticho Bequest, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem

Israeli draughtswoman and painter.

Anna Ticho spent her childhood and adolescence in Vienna. The city’s stimulating atmosphere fired her artistic ambitions, and she attended art school and spent countless hours in the Albertina Museum Vienna studying the drawings of the Old Masters, especially Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528) and Pieter Bruegel the Elder (1525-1569). Vienna’s early 20th-century contemporary art scene, with the Wiener Secession and its prominent figures, Gustav Klimt (1862-1918) and Egon Schiele (1890-1918), made a powerful impression on her.
Aged eighteen, she left Vienna and moved to Jerusalem with her cousin, Dr Abraham Ticho, an ophthalmic surgeon who she soon married. Parallel to her art practice she also worked in partnership with her husband in managing his famous clinic and assisting in ophthalmic operations.
A. Ticho began to draw the city of Jerusalem and the surrounding Judaean Mountains. She would walk through the streets of Jerusalem’s Old City, sitting on a roof where she would be undisturbed while spending hours making pictures of the alleys, the small square houses, and vaulted roofs (Old City of Jerusalem, 1930). This became a lifelong practice, reflecting her love for Jerusalem and an almost mystical bond between her and the city.

She also spent much time in rural areas outside the city in the Judaean Desert and hills, such as in Jericho, where she and her husband rented a little house and later in the nearby village of Motza. Her drawings done there convey peacefulness and beauty in these quite oases (The Oasis of Jericho, 1939).
The artist considered landscape drawing the most important part of her oeuvre. Between 1930 and 1950 the human form played a role as well. The visage was like another kind of landscape to be explored and studied (Portrait of a Woman, 1940). She always worked with a model and tried pen, ink and watercolour in addition to pencil and charcoal, creating expressionist portraits as well as some flower paintings, usually executed in watercolour. Drawing was her true forte but she sometimes explored and worked in etching.
A. Ticho never belonged to a school or group of artists. She had frequent exhibitions in Israel and abroad, which made her work well known and acknowledged by critics and institutions. Her drawings can be found in museum collections around the world.

In her last twenty years she worked mainly in her studio, drawing upon an inexhaustible store of impressions and memories. Liberated from the dictates of mimetic depiction, this led to a creative surge of expansive landscapes, often in muted pastel tones conceived from imagination. In them, she captured the essence of her beloved landscape in an abstracted manner (Hilly Landscape, late 1970s).
A. Ticho received the highest awards from the city of Jerusalem and the State of Israel. Prior to her death, she bequeathed her paintings and house as a spiritual and cultural centre to the Israel Museum. The historic house now hosts both a permanent installation about its former owners as well as temporary exhibitions.

Mayrav Lanski Shenhar

A notice produced as part of the TEAM international academic network: Teaching, E-learning, Agency and Mentoring

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