Country of context
Erwin Fabian was born in Berlin around 1915. He had no formal art training in Germany but had worked in the commercial art field before coming to Australia in 1940 as an internee on the transport ship Dunera. At internment camps at Hay, Orange and Tatura he met artists such as Bruno Simon and Ludwig Hirschfeld Mack. Through these associations Fabian’s interest in art developed. Some of his most powerful images of war and dislocation were produced during this time. Improvising with materials at hand, he made monotype prints using old window glass or polished masonite, and ink made from boot polish. These works portray his complex responses to war, dislocation and a new environment.
After his release from internment Fabian moved to Melbourne where he worked in advertising, producing drawings and covers for army education publications. In 1950 he moved to London where he was a lecturer at the London School of Printmaking. In 1962 he returned to Australia making his home in Melbourne. He went to London again between 1966 and 1972 and has since lived in Melbourne. He continues to exhibit sculpture and monoprints.