Children`s Drawings from Terezin

Today, Permanent

Pinkas Synagogue Široká 3, Praha 1

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Exhibitions

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Victims of the Holocaust are also commemorated in a permanent exhibition of children’s drawings from Terezín, which, since May 1997, is housed in the upper floor of the synagogue. The story of Jewish children deported to Terezín during the Second World War is outlined in 19 sections in the room adjoining the upper-floor gallery. Terezín functioned as a transit camp between 1941 and 1945 where Jewish inmates were held before shipment east to extermination camps. The story begins with reflections on the events immediately following 15 March 1939, when the remaining territory of Bohemia and Moravia was occupied and incorporated into the Nazi Protectorate.

This is followed by depictions of transports to the Terezín ghetto (the first arriving on 24 November 1941) and of everyday ghetto life and conditions in the children’s “homes”. There are also depictions of festival celebrations and dreams which the incarcerated children had of returning home, or of going to Palestine. This part forms a kind of poetic intermezzo between the brutal uprooting from home and deportation to Auschwitz, which is the final and most tragic chapter of the whole story.

The story is depicted through children’s drawings which were made at Terezín between 1942 and 1944. These took shape in the course of art classes organized by Mrs. Friedl Dicker-Brandeis (1898 – 1944), a painter, interior and stage designer, graduate of the Bauhaus, and pupil of Franz Čížek , Johann Itten, Lyonel Feininger, Oskar Schlemmer and Paul Klee.