The ProsenPeople

Icon of Loss

Thursday, October 01, 2009 | Permalink

Posted by Naomi Firestone-Teeter

The touching, haunting paintings by Samuel Bak, inspired by the little boy from the famous Stroop Report photo taken in the Warsaw Ghetto in April 1943, are now available in a book published by Syracuse University Press. Along with the images, Danna Nolan Fewell and Gary A. Phillips consider the historical and visual implications of this iconic image and its contemporary evocations. The book, Icon of Loss: The Haunting Child of Samuel Bak, is now available.

A survivor of the Vilna liquidation and a child prodigy whose first exhibition was held in the Vilna Ghetto at age nine, Bak weaves together personal history and Jewish history to articulate an iconography of his Holocaust experience. Bak’s art preserves memory of the twentieth-century ruination of Jewish life and culture by way of an artistic passion and precision that stubbornly announces the creativity of the human spirit.

To view images from the book, please visit Pucker Art Publications.