|Holocaust and Art
Art from and about the Holocaust
has served as an important means of expression for the artists who
created it and as a critical means of understanding for audiences
who have consumed it.
From the collection
The New Order by Arthur Szyk
J.J. Horowitz, a friend of internationally renowned
illustrator Arthur Szyk,
urged him to create a series of cartoons mocking the architects
of European Fascism,
and help to fight what Horowitz called "the battle in which all
lovers of democracy are engaged." The series, published in 1941
in New York before the Americans entered the war, features highly
rendered and deeply cutting caricatures. Szyk died in 1951.
Art out of Agony
Canadian politician, broadcaster and humanitarian
Lewis interviewed 10 prominent writers, artists and filmmakers
for a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio series that aired
in May and June of 1983, to understand how they interpret the Holocaust.
Survivor, novelist and literature professor Aharon
Appelfeld tells Lewis that the tragedy of the Holocaust is so vast
and powerful that, like the sun, it cannot be observed directly.
At the same time, he says, it crystallized the Jewish identity of
its survivors, many of whom had been drifting toward assimilation.
Survivor and writer Elie Wiesel debates whether the
Holocaust can be understood through fiction. If it can't, he argues,
it ought not to be described at all. Wiesel, who won the Nobel Peace
Prize in 1986, may have been the first to use the term "Holocaust"
in reference to the genocide
of European Jews.
Film critic and historian Annette Insdorf, author
of Indelible Shadows: Film and the Holocaust, discusses
the ability and inability of film to portray the Holocaust. She
concludes, with difficulty, that even superficial depictions of
the Holocaust ultimately do more good than harm.