Doitch (Deutsch), Eric (Erich): Watering the Window Box


A charming and gently observed image, a limited edition colour engraving, numbered 6 of only 25, signed ‘Doitch’ and framed.

This work is typical of Eric Doitch’s observational studies of street life in London.

Artist: Eric Doitch, (1923-2000)

Title and date: Watering the Window Box, 1950s

Size: 29.0 x 26.0 cms.


Artist description:

An underappreciated painter and etcher, Eric Doitch, also known as Erich Deutsch, was born in Vienna and having escaped the Nazis, he arrived in London in 1939, settling in Maida Vale, a centre for Jewish refugees from Europe. He formed part of the London-based Jewish group of creative individuals that had such an impact on cultural life in post-war Britain. He studied at Camberwell School of Art where his teachers included Victor Pasmore and Sir William Coldstream, and then the Royal College of Art, where he met his wife, the artist Alice Mary Fitzpayne, whom he married in 1954, moving to Camberwell, South London. Doitch taught printmaking, drawing and painting. His subjects were drawn from London life – “West-Indian men on street corners, children playing, burnt-out cars on waste-sites, markets and fairground scenes. Other works took Jewish themes such as the Golem and a harrowing image of women in Vienna scrubbing the streets during the Nazi occupation”.

In 1976 Doitch moved with his wife to rural Lincolnshire, each establishing a painting studio at opposite ends of their house, a former vicarage. Into his studies of the landscape and the farming community, he also incorporated memories of his family who perished in the Holocaust. Till the end of his life Doitch remained artistically independent and a very private individual, forming strong friendships with fellow refugees such as Erich Fried and Elias Canetti.