Arnold Henry Bergier (1914-2007)
A sculptor, collagist, and caricaturist; his sculptures include portraits from life of prominent persons, works for synagogues and churches, and public buildings.
Bergier sang in the Metropolitan Opera chorus as a young man and in 1938 he went to Paris where he studied art with Camilo Egas, Robert Gwathmey and others, returning to the Village after the outbreak of World War II. He joined the Navy and served in the Pacific on an L.S.T. landing craft and later with a unit that made relief maps from aerial photos taken with a Speed Graphic camera. Transferred to Admiral Nimitz’s staff as an artist and photographer and working for the PAC Fleet Bulletin, he won through this connection commissions for busts of Nimitz and Admiral William Halsey of the Pacific Fleet.
After his return to Greenwich Village in New York, he was commissioned in 1950 to sculpt a bust of Albert Einstein. In the 1950s he was active in the "Save the Village" historic preservation campaign. He was also an active member of the American Movement for World Government, Veterans for Peace, and a lifetime member of Veterans of Foreign Wars.
In the 1950s he designed the Hannukah Menorah and the decor around the Torak Ark for the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation Temple.
Sculptures by Arnold Henry Bergier
John Dewey (1940)
John Barbirolli (1941)
Arturo Toscanini (1942)
Chester Nimitz (1945)
Albert Einstein (1948)
Four Stones (1952)
Richard E. Byrd memorial plaque (1956)
Walt Whitman memorial plaque (1968)
Moses 1969, Clay
Obituary, New York Times. January 23, 2007; obituary, The Villager
Janay Jadine Wong, "Synagogue Art of the 1950s: A New Context for Abstraction." Art Journal 53, Winter 1994: 37-43.
Submitted by: Charles E. Bryan, Jr. & Norman T. Stephens