Friedrich Adler (1878 – 1942) German sculptor and designer

Friedrich Adler featured image
Friedrich Adler featured image


Adler was born on April 29, 1878, in Laupheim, Germany, to Karoline Frieda Sommer and Isidor Adler, the proprietor of a pastry store. His birthplace is now the Cafรฉ Hermes, a late Italian Renaissance-style Art Nouveau structure. He attended the Munich School of Applied Arts from 1894 to 1898. (now known as Academy of Fine Arts, Munich). In 1902, Adler opted to pursue a second degree at the Debschitz School, a new teaching and research centre for applied and free art founded by Wilhelm von Debschitz and sculptor Hermann Obrist. He was teaching stucco technology at the Debschitz School by 1903.

  • Table lamp by Friedrich Adler
  • Art Nouveau Table Lamps by Friedrich Adler
  • Bronze Table lamp 1900s by Friedrich Adler
  • Candelabra by Friedrich Adler for Osiris, Germany 1902
  • Art Nouveau Jugendstil mirror designed by Friedrich Adler

He taught at Hamburg’s School for Applied Art from 1907 to 1914 and again from 1918 to 1933. (with a break in between for his military service during World War I).

He drew closer to the Jewish religion as well as Jewish iconography and art as Nazism grew. He created two stained glass windows for his hometown synagogue. He designed the interior of a Jewish house of worship for the Cologne Werkbund exhibition in 1914.

Adler’s design work changed after he served in World War I from 1914 to 1918, and he stopped working in the Art Nouveau style. Later in life, he concentrated on batik and fabric printing, founding the Hamburg-based Adler Textildruckgesellschaft (Adler Textile Printing Company Hamburg). In the meantime, he was busy directing mastery lessons in Nuremberg and producing applied art pieces for over fifty clients.

He designed for metalworkers O.G.F. Schmitt, Nuremberg, in the 1920s. He created industrial-production processes based on batik techniques for Adler Textile Company, Hamburg (Ateha). He evolved from Jugendstil to abstract floral decoration and then to technological abstract ornamentation. He was murdered in Auschwitz.


Byars, M., & Riley, T. (2004). The design encyclopedia. Laurence King Publishing.

Wikipedia contributors. (2021, May 10). Friedrich Adler (artist). Inย Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 20:09, May 28, 2021, fromย

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