George Weber, 1907-2002
George Weber is credited for introducing the process and art form of serigraphy to Western Canadian artists and continued to champion the process through the 1950’s by teaching workshops and maintaining a collection of handmade Japanese and European papers for printmaking which was made available to members of the Canadian Federation of Canadian Artists, Edmonton Chapter.
Weber was born and raised in Munich, Germany where he trained as a draughtsman in wallpaper design and display. In the late 1920s, a dangerous political climate was brewing in Germany, Weber felt the tension and made the decision to immigrate to Toronto, Canada.
In Toronto, he found work as a wallpaper designer while he studied composition, colour and commercial silkscreen techniques at the Ontario College of Art. However, soon he was on the move again, relocating to Edmonton, Alberta where he continued his studies at night classes at the University of Alberta and the Banff School of Fine Arts under Jack Taylor and Janet Middleton.
One skill Weber mastered well in his commercial wallpaper design career was the process of screen printing, or in artistic applications, serigraphy. This process was still unknown in the West and Weber found he could easily lecture and fill classes with others eager to learn the process. In 1948, he began lecturing at the University of Alberta on the silkscreen process and in 1950 and 1951, he led workshops at the Edmonton Art Gallery.
Weber received a high honour when his silkscreen print of the Inkaneep Reserve, Osoyoos, B.C. (1957) was the first serigraph selected as an honorary membership print for the Society of Canadian Painter-Etchers and Engravers. Weber’s imagery captured the mountains and forests of the Rockies, the prairies of Alberta, and the interior and coastal areas of British Columbia.
He died at the age of 97 in Edmonton Alberta.
Memberships and Awards
George Weber was a founding member and president of the Edmonton branch of the Society of Canadian Painter-Etchers and Engravers (CPE)
Society of Canadian Painters in Water Colour, the Canadian Graphic Society, (member)
The Edmonton Art Club
The Federation of Canadian Artists (FCA)
The Northwest Printmakers (Seattle)
Edmonton Historical Board’s Recognition Award for his series of sketches and watercolours of historic buildings and sites in the city, (1976)
The C.P.E. Permanent Print Collection, Hamilton, ON
Art and Letters Club, Toronto, ON
Glenbow Foundation, Calgary, AB
Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, Banff, AB
The Feckless Collection, Vancouver, BC
The City of Edmonton Archives, AB
Edmonton Art Gallery, AB
Dr. J.A. Williams, Edmonton, Alberta
George Ethier Construction (1964) Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta
Imperial Oil Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta
Nova Corp., Calgary, Alberta
International Pipe Line Company, Edmonton, Alberta
Lakehead Pipeline Company, Edmonton, Alberta
Mr. D. Sexsmith, Edmonton, Alberta
Canadian Tire, Edmonton
Field & Field, Edmonton
Altpro Cleaning & Disaster Restoration Ltd., Edmonton
H.P.I. Beverages, Edmonton
Government of Alberta
The Good Samaritan Society, Edmonton
Life Underwriters, Edmonton
Banff School of Fine Art, Banff