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Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History
Vilniaus Gaono Žydų Istorijos Muziejus


Roundtable discussion:Memory in Colors. Celebration and Tragedy in the Jewish culture of the 20th century

Published: 2022-04-11
The fate of European Jewish artists of the mid 20th century is linked by civilizational shocks that have affected their worldview. It is against the background of war and devastation in Ukraine that the paintings of Samuel Bak, after whom the museum, where this discussion takes place, suddenly becomes relevant. His pictures, depicting streets with lost keys and locks, remind us of the fate of all the war-torn refugees. The father of Samuel Bak was killed in Paneriai, and the father of the painter Arik Brauer from Vienna, whose works are presented to the Lithuanian public for the first time, died in the Riga ghetto. Both Bak and Brauer rely on the traditional legends as well as the Bible.
Jewish festivals are all associated with ancient myths, legends, historical narratives that suddenly become significant in our lifetime as well. The events of the past, be it the Holocaust or the dangers, lurking for the Jews as they had to flee Egypt, are captured by images of artistic creation.


Participants will discuss the importance of memory in Jewish culture and importance of culture in commemorating the Jewish history.
Participants of the discussion:
Yvonne Toncic-Sorinj, Austrian Ambassador to Lithuania
Dr. Danielle Spera, Director of Jewish Museum Vienna, writer and journalist 
Dr. Lara Lempertienė, Head of the Judaica Research Center at the Lithuanian National Library
Dr. Simona Makselienė, art historian and critic, head of the „Art Market“ agency
Markas Zingeris, former director of Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History, former special adviser on genocide to Lithuanian Prime Minister (moderator)


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