Another palpable hit in our project to clear copyright is the British artist Hellmut Sail (1908–1971)
We had struggled to find any information about this artist, and the ambiguous way he signed his works, 'Hellmut S', made him doubly difficult to identify. But some fine detection by Alison Brownie led us to the holder of the copyright in his work, his son Lawrence, and so to some details about his life.
Hellmut Sail was born in Bromborough, near Liverpool in 1908, of German parents. He spent his childhood in Germany, travelled widely in pre-war Europe, particularly in Yugoslavia and Spain, settling eventually in England. He died in 1971.
We admired the four coloured woodcuts by Sail that are in our collection so much that one of them featured in our 2005 exhibition Graphica Britannica. The book of this show, which celebrated the gift of prints from Sir Rex Nan Kivell is available in our shop.