James Joseph Magennis VC Frances Elizabeth Clarke Stewart Parker Samuel Beckett Sam Hanna Bell William Carleton John Hewitt Rosamond Praegar Bernard (Barney) Hughes

Elizabeth Shaw (1920 - 1992):
Artist


Elizabeth Shaw was born in Belfast and moved with her family to England in 1933. She studied art at Chelsea Art School, with Henry Moore and Graham Sutherland among her teachers. She established herself as an illustrator and cartoonist during the Second World War (during which time she worked as a mechanic to help the war effort) and was regarded on a par with Ronald Searle, publishing in Our Time and Lilliput. She moved to Germany in 1946 and married René Graetz from Switzerland. They were politically left-leaning and committed to the establishment of a new Communist society in Berlin and both learned  German. They attended the founding meetings of UNESCO in Paris. Elizabeth Shaw made her reputation with her caricatures of the East Berlin intellectual world. She produced, with Bertha Waterstradt, Das Magazin, which published the contributions of women artists and writers for twenty years. She wrote and illustrated children's books that sold in East Germany. She illustrated Brecht's poems for children and these brought her international acclaim. During the McCarthy era, René and Elizabeth Graetz had a wide coterie of dissident friends from both America and Britain. She began to publish books on places she had visited and loved, particularly Ireland, and there were Arts Council Exhibitions of her work - which was considerable, running to dozens of titles - in Coventry and Belfast. In 1981 she was awarded amongst other distinctions the Käthe Kollwitz Prize, named for the distinguished (and politically left-leaning) sculptress; such other awards included the Gutenberg Prize of the City of Leipzig, the Hans Baltzer Prize (named for a distinguished illustrator of children's books), and the Kunstpreis der DDR (Art Prize of the German Democratic Republic). She published her autobiography, Irish Berlin, in German in 1990. The Elizabeth-Shaw-Grundschule in Grunowstraße, Berlin, is named for her. A memorial to her is located by her husband's grave, her ashes having been scattered in the Irish sea.


Born: 4 May 1920
Died: 27 June 1992
Kate Newmann
Acknowledgements:

Additional research by Richard Froggatt