In Claude Lanzmann’s seminal nine-and-a-half-hour film SHOAH, he chose not to use any images of the Holocaust, telling the story instead solely through the words of witnesses. By contrast, art historian Georges Didi-Huberman and contemporary artist Gerhard Richter have both emphasized the power of images to reflect and educate—the former in his book Images in Spite of All: Four Photographs from Auschwitz, and the latter in a series of paintings titled “Birkenau.”
Join the Museum of Jewish Heritage and the Fritz Ascher Society for a lecture exploring the tension between these different perspectives on images, words, and the Holocaust with German art historian and curator Eckhart Gillen. Gillen will ground the discussion in the example of Boris Lurie, the subject of the Museum’s special exhibition Boris Lurie: Nothing To Do But To Try, who used art to access his buried memories before he was able to address them with words.
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Live closed captions will be available during this program.
Boris Lurie: Nothing To Do But To Try is made possible by The Knapp Family Foundation, Patricia Askwith Kenner & Family, and other generous donors. Special thanks to the Boris Lurie Art Foundation for its commitment to this presentation.
Public programming at the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust is made possible, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference); the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy C. Hochul and the New York State Legislature; Battery Park City Authority; The Goldie and David Blanksteen Foundation; Marcia Horowitz Educational Fund for Cross-Cultural Awareness; and other generous donors.
Image detail: Liberation of Magdeburg, 1946. Pastel and gouache on paper. Courtesy of the Boris Lurie Art Foundation.