Dolf Rieser Biography

Dolf Rieser

South African



Dolf Rieser (1898-1983), painter, printmaker and teacher, was born in King William’s Town, South Africa in 1898 and was educated in Germany and Switzerland. In 1917 he was enrolled at the Ecole Polytechnic in Zurich receiving his Diploma in Agricultural Engineering. His continued studies earned him his Doctorate in Biological Science at the University of Lausanne.


In 1923, Rieser studied with Hans Hoffman and, in 1928, joined Stanley William Hayter’s Parisian Atelier 17 working with both Hayter and Joseph Hecht. He worked at the atelier until 1940, at which time he moved to England to join in the war effort.  After the war Rieser lectured on biology, liberal studies and art. In the 1960s he pioneered the technique of printing on fiberglass panels and laminates.


Rieser contributed prints to the Fraternity and the Salvo for Russia folios and produced his own folios of engravings entitled Africa and Tales of the Congo. He was a member of the Royal Society of Painter-Etchers and his work is included in the collections of the Victoria and Albert, Arts Council of the United Kingdom, National Gallery of Canada and the New York Public Library.