Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Georgian Court gallery hosts Holocaust exhibit

Tri Town News:

LAKEWOOD — Georgian Court University will present a multimedia "Holocaust Memorial Exhibit" from April 6- 24 in the university's M. Christina Geis Art Gallery.

The exhibit, timed to correspond with Holocaust Remembrance Day on April 21, will include children's books, historic and modern photographs, maps, posters, and text panels.

"This important exhibit will take the viewer along a journey of one of humanity's darkest times," said Kathleen Settles, gallery director, and one of the exhibit organizers. "The purpose of the exhibit is to promote awareness, teach tolerance, inspire compassion and hopefully enlist the viewer to an allegiance of goodwill toward all of humanity."

According to Lisa A. Festa, an assistant professor of art history who also helped to organize the display, the exhibit will feature a history of anti-Semitism throughout the ages, a timeline of the rise of Hitler and the Nazi party, and focus on the implementation of laws against Jews as well as the Nazis' censorship of art and culture.

The exhibition will continue with a spotlight on the ghettos of Warsaw, Poland, and Terezín, Czechoslovakia, as well as the concentration camps of Dachau, Germany, and Auschwitz-Birkenau, Poland. Itwill also feature the liberation of the camps near the end of the war. The exhibition will further pay tribute to several rescuers and the "righteous among nations," and will end with a display about genocides in other lands after World War II.

"It is hoped that viewers will leave the exhibition with a sense of compassion and enlightenment, as well as a motivation and personal drive to help change current events in order to ensure that genocide never happens again," Festa said.

The exhibit coincides with Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day set aside to commemorate the lives and heroism of the six million Jewish people who died in the Holocaust between 1933 and 1945. The exhibit closes on the anniversary of the onset of the "Great Catastrophe," the Armenian genocide of 1.5 million people that began in 1915.

In addition to Settles and Festa, the exhibit was organized and compiled with the assistance of José Gonzalez, lecturer in art.

The gallery is on the second floor of the Arts and Science Center on Georgian Court's Lakewood campus. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The exhibit is free and open to the public.

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