The Art of the Holocaust
Skylar Perkins 7
About Jewish Art
Art was very important to the Jewish culture. Jews valued literature of study of humor, storytelling, and poetry. Jewish artists have depicted people in both sculpture and paintings, but traditionally their artwork was limited to only being able to draw objects used for worship or to illustrate texts. Nazis would destroy any art that they considered “un-German”, including burning books. In 1935, Jewish writers, musicians, and art dealers were forbidden from working.
About Hitler's Art Habits
Dean, Martin, ed. "Cultural Looting: The Seizure of Archives and Libraries by Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg, 1940–1945." United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Web. 28 Jan. 2016. http://www.ushmm.org/information/exhibitions/online-features/special-focus/offenbach-archival-depot/einsatzstab-reichsleiter-rosenberg-a-policy-of-plunder.
Johnson, Bryan. "Top 10 Famous Pieces of Art Stolen by the Nazis."
Toptenz.net. TopTenz, 12 Mar. 2014. Web. 28 Jan. 2016. http://www.toptenz.net/10-famous-pieces-of-art-stolen-by-the-nazis.php.
Wood, Angela Gluck. Holocaust: The Events and Their Impact on Real People. New York, NY: DK, 2007. Print.
Other Facts To Know
- Charlotte Buresova, a prisoner who worked in the artists' workshop, was "hired" or told to paint a picture of The Virgin Mary. She was told by the German officer to not finish it so she wouldn't get deported. He was very impressed with her art skills, and that is what kept her alive.
- Portraits were the most common artwork during the Holocaust time period. "portraits comprise one quarter of all paintings and drawings produced in the camps."
"During World War II, Jews produced art in concentration camps, or while in hiding. Unlike artistic production undertaken by outsiders in the name of propaganda, or to confirm the events after the killing had ended, art created by victims under Nazi domination may be viewed as a form of documentation, witnessing, and spiritual resistance that plays a very important historical role as evidence from the victim’s perspective."
Artwork labeled as "Degenerate" was legally banned from entering Germany so it would be illegally sold.
"In 1985, European countries began to release inventory lists of works of art "that were confiscated from Jews by the Nazis during World War II, and announced the details of a process for returning the works to their owners and rightful heirs."
Rosenberg, Pnina. "Sharing StoriesInspiring Change." Art during the Holocaust. Jewish Women's Archive, Web. 04 Feb. 2016. <http://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/art-during-holocaust>.
Feinstein, Stephen Charles. "Holocaust: Art and the Holocaust." YIVO Encyclopedia of Jews in Eastern Europe 13 December 2010. 4 February 2016 <http://www.yivoencyclopedia.org/article.aspx/Holocaust/Art_and_the_Holocaust>.
"Holocaust Restitution: Recovering Stolen Art." Jewish Virtual Library. Jewish Virtual Library, Sept. 2014. Web. 4 Feb. 2016. <https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/lostart.html>.