A lot happened since my last post in July. On 4 September, my new book “In Fading Light. Traces of Jewish Life in the East of Europe” was released. Since then, the book was kindly recepted by the media. And there was more: On 2 September, I was awarded with a “Key to the City” in Lviv. Bookstore and gallery Böttger exhibits a selection of my photos in Bonn and there are plans for a bigger exhibition in Augsburg.
On 14 September, NDR – one of the major radio broadcasters in Germany – was the first to report on “In Fading Light” with a review and interview.
From minute 9:05 on you can listen to it: https://www.ndr.de/info/Schabat-Schalom,audio438972.html
Spiegel Online – the online edition of Der Spiegel – followed with a longer article on historical backgrounds, a review by Katja Iken and a photo gallery on 26 September.
My friend Adam Kerpel-Fronius wrote a review of “In Fading Light” for Jüdische Allgemeine. Adam is also the author of the foreword of my book. Jüdische Allgemeine published it in its online and print edition on 27 September.
Pieke Biermann reviewed my book for rbb – Radio Berlin Brandenburg – and its magazine “Literaturagenten” on 30 September.
You may listen to the review from minute 33:05 on.
Rachel Druck of The Museum of the Jewish People at Beit Hatfutsot in Tel Aviv gave me the opportunity to write about my photos and my motivation to take them.
The article was published on 4 October. Already on the same day, Ruth Ellen Gruber of Jewish Heritage Europe picked it up and contemplated on “symbolic mezuzahs”.
Catholic News Agency KNA interviewed me and distributed the interview to their contractors but I have no information whether and where it was published.
Update, 26 October, 2018: Deutschlandfunk Kultur broadcasted a review. Thank you, Stefanie Oswalt, for the interview and the report! https://www.deutschlandfunkkultur.de/bildband-in-schwindendem-licht-auf-den-spuren.1079.de.html?dram:article_id=431623
Update, 01 November, 2018: Cosmo Radio po-russki, a radio programme für Russian speakers by WDR, reported about my book and the book presentation by Klaus-Dieter Ehmke in Berlin-Friedrichshain. You can listen to it from minute 11:30 on. Thank you, Leonid Poljakov, for the interview and the report!
Update, 20 November, 2018: haGalil – prabably the most important Jewish-German online magazine – reviewed my book.
“These are incredibly captivating images. One turns page after page and fights with the emotions that are triggered by the aesthetics of the mostly decaying buildings and the circumstances of this decay.”
Update, 20 November, 2018: Reformatorisch Dagblad, a Dutch online and print magazine, reported about my book “In Fading Light”. Thank you René Zeeman for the interview!
Update, 22 November, 2018: The online edition of Der Stern reviewed my book.
Update, 10 December, 2018: MDR, a German radio and television broadcaster, published an interview with me.
Update, 1 December, 2018: Nederlands Dagblad adopted René Zeeman’s article from Reformatorisch Dagblad: https://www.nd.nl/nieuws/buitenland/in-trothenbrod-zie-je-de-holocaust-was-meer-dan.3205395.lynkx
Update, 18 December, 2018: Kulturzeit, a popular culture magazine of the German-Austrian-Swiss TV channel 3sat recommended my book “In Fading Light” today. From minute 24:40 on you can watch it: http://www.3sat.de/mediathek/?mode=play&obj=77925
Update, 19 December, 2018: Peter Truschner published a review of my book “In Fading Light” in Perlentaucher – together with a review of Valery Faminsky’s photo book on post-war Berlin.
Update, 20 December, 2018: A nice review of “In Fading Light” by Michael Seirer in “Janetts Meinung”, a popular literature blog.
Update, 03 January, 2019: Ami Magazine, a Hasidic, US-based journal, has published a 10 pages long interview with me in its print edition and also on its website. http://www.amimagazine.org/2019/01/02/before-they-disappear-forever/
I am grateful for this opportunity to talk about my experiences, but there are things in the article that are questionable. Author Isaac (Jack) Horowitz describes how we met “in a small, remote town in Ukraine”. This never happened; we only had two longer Skype sessions. Of course this makes the story more catchy for the audience and this is probably the reason why he quotes me with things I never said. Most of the quotes are authentic and I would have authorized them if I would have seen them in advance – but I never said that all of Ukraine’s Jewish heritage is going to disappear and I’m also not megalomaniacal enough to believe that “all we will have is my photographs”.
Update, 4 January, 2019: Irine Beridze reviewed three books for Read Ost, one of them “In Fading Light”: https://read-ost.com/2018/12/29/bildbaende/
Update, 9 January, 2019: Michael Lausberg reviewed “In Fading Light” for “scharf links”: http://www.scharf-links.de/45.0.html?&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=68085&tx_ttnews[backPid]=56&cHash=6942198409
Update, 21 January, 2019: A nice review of “In Fading Light” by writer Annerose Kirchner: http://www.annerose-kirchner.de/index.php/lesen-hoeren-sehen/63-in-schwindendem-licht
Update, 28 January, 2019: Axel Klappoth reviewed “In Fading Light” for “Literarisches Berlin”: http://literarisches-berlin.de/Neue_Buecher/Ganze%20Buchbesprechungen/In_schwindendem_Licht.htm
Awarded in Lviv
On 2 September, I was awarded with a “Key to the City” in Lviv, Ukraine, together with 74 other individuals and organisations for keeping the memory of Jewish Galicia alive. I have no words for this honour and just feel gratitude towards all friends, institutions and organisations involved. With a ceremony in the city hall the city of Lviv commemorated the liquidation of Lviv ghetto and Janowska concentration camp in fall 1943 and remembers the tens of thousands of innocent victims of the German occupation of the city. As I was not able to attend the ceremony my friend and colleague Reinhard Schwalbach, who travelled to Lviv for professional reasons, transported the award and handed it over to me.
The 75 keys – glass replicas of an ancient synagogue key – were part of an installation by artist Rachel Stevens whose family originates from the Galician capital of Lviv. When I visited Rachel’s exhibition in spring and saw the installation, the first word that came into my mind was “black and white photo negative”. I thought of an archival find, something that would be developed and processed in a darkroom and that would speak about a hidden past and a gone world. Rachel writes: “This project will live on through the recipients!” I promise I will try my best.
A detailed report is on the website of Rohatyn Jewish Heritage: http://rohatynjewishheritage.org/2018/09/a-key-to-the-city/
Present and upcoming exhibitions
Until 10 November, bookstore and gallery Böttger in Bonn presents a selection of my photos. On Saturday, 13 October, and Saturday, 10 November, I will guide visitors through the exhebition and will talk about the background of the photos.
A bigger exhibition is already planned for January at Bukowina-Institut of Augsburg’s University.
At the moment life is good to me!