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Art Pioneer in Israel is Dead

Avigdor Stematsky, whose original style earned him the title of “father of modern art in Israel,” died Saturday at the age of 81.

He had been painting and teaching art in the country for more than 60 years.

A lyric colorist, Stematsky, fellow artist Yehezkel Streichman and their teacher, Yosef Zaritsky, led the New Horizons movement.

Dating from the founding of the state, it sought to transcend narrative landscape painting by pushing it toward abstraction and a more international language.

Stematsky was born in Russia and immigrated in 1921 to Palestine, where he studied at the Bezalel School. Later he opened his own teaching studio in Tel Aviv.

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