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Ascher: The Mad Silkman
Ascher: The Mad Silkman

Ascher: The Mad Silkman

Zika & Lida Ascher: Textiles and Fashion


404 Pages, 8.625 x 11

Formats: Cloth

Cloth, $99.95 (US $99.95) (CA $134.95)

Publication Date: July 2019

ISBN 9788075297488

Rights: WOR X UK, EUR, CN, HK & TW

Slovart Publishing, Ltd. (Jul 2019)

Price: $99.95


Although the name and the brand are entirely unknown in the Czech Republic, Ascher has been synonymous with fine textile design for more than seventy years in western Europe. This book traces the story of Zika Ascher and his wife Lida, whose personal and professional lives played out against the dramatic history of the twentieth century. After leaving Czechoslovakia in 1939, they built a highly successful enterprise in London that specialized in fashion fabrics. French, Italian, and British designers and fashion houses chose Ascher textiles for their collections, including Dior, Balenciaga, Lanvin, Pierre Cardin, Yves Saint Laurent, Ronald Paterson, David Sassoon, and Alberto Fabiani. Lida and Zika were especially celebrated for their Squares, a collection of luxurious printed scarves designed by famous artists such as Henry Moore, Henri Matisse, and André Derain. The book weaves together all the different strands of their eventful lives to produce a comprehensive account that goes beyond the individual artistic, technical, and business aspects. It devotes considerable attention to the years before Zika and Lida left Czechoslovakia in 1939 to go into exile in the United Kingdom, and it subsequently continues to map developments in their former homeland, which they never renounced. Lida and Zika's son Peter Ascher has also contributed to the book with some of his childhood memories.

Author Biography

Konstantina Hlavácková is an art historian, journalist, and curator of the Fabrick and Fashion Collection at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. She is a specialist in the history of fabrics and textiles.