Office of International Programs
Study Tours

FORBIDDEN ART

An exhhibition of photographs of camp art

art image

The Museum’s collection of art connected with the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp (a UNESCO World Heritage site) is unique and the largest of its kind in the world. Its great historical and emotional value makes camp art exceptionally valuable,with a universal message that everyone who sees it can understand.

These artistic works, made under conditions of extreme danger, are an exceptional and moving document of a historical time. They embody the emotions that accompanied the prisoners every day, which are hard to re-create today. The camp art collection is under special scholarly and conservationist protection, and is the subject of research based on the detailed documentation of every object.

There was harsh punishment for making art that was not ordered by the camp authorities (“Forbidden Art”). However, prisoners created illegal art in the camp almost from the very beginning, and then kept it in secret or smuggled it immediately to the outside world. The Museum collection features a wide range of art works made secretly for the artist or for fellow prisoners. These include greeting cards, small everyday objects, devotional objects, and drawings embodying memories of freedom. Most important, however, are the works that document the reality of the camp: portraits of fellow prisoners and drawings of scenes from camp life.click here for more information

Presented by:
Office of International Programs
October 1 - 20,2012
Student Union, 2nd floor

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For more information on NEIU's annual Art in Response to violence conference,click here