Artur Oliver Julianus Sahlen Biography

Artur Oliver Julianus Sahlen




Artur Oliver Julianus Sahlen was born in Sodra Sams parish, Alvsborg county, Sweden, on February 14, 1882. He studied at Victoria Westberg's painting school and the Swedish Artists' Association School, where he focused on blockprinting, before traveling to Paris and enrolling at the Academie Colarossi in 1907. There, he studied under Christian Krogh and met fellow Swedish artist Harriet Sundstrom, with whom he would found the Foreningen Original-Trasnitt (Original Woodcut Association, also known as "F.O.T.") in 1911. His first exhibition took place in 1909 at Hallins Konsthandel, Stockholm.

Sahlen would continue to be a champion for woodcuts throughout his career. Along with Sundstrom, he started a press in 1916 under the name AB Handpresstryck, and the two artists published their and others' woodcuts as original art rather than as reproductions of other forms of art, namely paintings. Along with several other Swedish blockprint artists, they would organize the first international exhibition of graphic arts in Sweden in 1914.

In 1929 Sahlen was elected Vice Chair of The Graphic Society of Sweden, and in 1931 he developed his own mechanical woodcut printing press. While working as a commercial and fine woodcut artist, he also continued working in oils, exhibiting throughout Sweden and elsewhere. Sahler died on March 12, 1945 in Stockholm. His work is included in the permanent collections of the National Museum of Sweden; the Malmo Museum; Gothenburg Art Museum; Norrkoping Art Museum, Vasteras Art Museums, the British and Victoria and Albert Museums (London), the Honolulu Acadmy of Arts, and museums in Helsinki, Turku, Dresden, Vienna, and New York.