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Artists’ creations captured their hopes, anguish, and defiance
A young woman drew to document desperation in the ghetto. A
composer wrote an opera while surviving under a false identity. A Jewish
woman penned a poem about her friendship with fellow forced laborers.
This International Artists Day, we honor Holocaust victims and survivors by
sharing some of their artistic creations in the Museum’s collection. These
works—testaments to the resilience of the human spirit in a time of
brutality—stand as evidence, inspire learning about this history, and help
preserve the memory of those who were killed.
Images: A watercolor painted by Simon Jeruchim in 1943 or
1944. USHMM, courtesy of Simon Jeruchim; Portraits of Fritzi
Geiringer painted by her husband, Erich, circa 1942–44. USHMM,
courtesy of Eva Schloss; Composer and Holocaust survivor Joseph
Beer; pictured before World War II. Courtesy of Béatrice Beer; Artist
Esther Lurie pictured after World War II. USHMM, gift of Esther
Lurie; A drawing, “Mother’s Shoes,” by Ava Hegedish, circa
1942–44. USHMM, Gift of Ava Kadishson Schieber; A poem written
by Erzsébet Frank in 1945 and illustrated by her fellow forced laborer in
Markkleeberg, Germany. USHMM, Gift of Elizabeth Mermel;
While serving in the US Army, Metropolitan Museum of Art curator James
Rorimer supervises American GIs carrying paintings down the steps of the
Neuschwanstein Castle in southern Germany in 1945. National
Archives, provided by the Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of