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Anton Zwemmer

(1892—1979)


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Dutch-born bookseller, publisher, and art dealer, active in England. In 1916 he became the manager of a foreign-language bookshop in Charing Cross Road, London, and in the 1920s he developed it into a specialist art bookshop that played an important role in spreading knowledge and appreciation of modern art in Britain in the inter-war years. From 1929 to 1968 the Zwemmer Gallery operated in Lichfield Street, adjacent to the bookshop. It held many important exhibitions of contemporary art, including Dalí's first one-man show in Britain (1934) and the final exhibition of the Seven & Five Society (1935), which was the first all-abstract show to be held in England. Later, it exhibited John Bratby after he had parted company for financial reasons with the Beaux Arts Gallery (see Lessore). Zwemmer also published books, including the first monograph on Henry Moore (1934, by Herbert Read). There remains a specialist art book company trading from the Charing Cross Road site, although Zwemmer's itself went into receivership in 2003.

From A Dictionary of Modern and Contemporary Art in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Art.


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