Remembering Fermin Rocker
More than 20 years ago I lived in a block of 15 mansion flats in Tufnell Park, north London. One of my neighbours on the top floor was a lovely man with the unforgettable name of Fermin Rocker.
A professional artist of some repute, Fermin was already in his early 90s when we met. He used to keep his hand in by painting friends and neighbours, which is how I come to have two portraits of myself by Fermin on my wall today. My pal Roberto Manzotti took these photos of Fermin and I.
Born in 1907, Fermin lived until 2004. He was often referred to as the son of Rudolf Rocker, a famous anarchist, but I prefer to think of him as his own person, a charming, gentle and amusing man who created charming, gentle and (sometimes) amusing works of art. His paintings of me are not his best works, but I feel honoured to have been even one of his practice subjects.
Fermin’s work can be viewed at www.ferminrocker.org. His obituary from The Guardian is at http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/2004/oct/26/guardianobituaries.artsobituaries
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