Jerusalem of the Balkans

The Greek city of Thessaloniki had 53,000 Jewish residents before the German occupation in World War II. The vast majority was murdered in Auschwitz, Treblinka and Sobibor. Less than 2,000 survived. My friends Eleftheria and Tsako showed me some of the places where the heritage of the once largest ethnic group of the city is still visible.

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Sinking in the Sand

In the towns south of Warsaw some traces of the former Jewish presence are still visible. In Falenica is a former synagogue. In Otwock, Karczew and Radość Jewish cemeteries are preserved. But the future of these monuments is uncertain.

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What is left of the Jewish Heritage in Góra Kalwaria?

South of Warsaw, Góra Kalwaria was once an important Hasidic court. Thanks to a friend, I was able to find what is left and preserved until the present day. There are the remains of a synagogue – waiting for renovation – and a destroyed but well maintained cemetery. And there is a strange local habit…

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A Remnant Rescued from the Flames

Nożyk Synagogue is Warsaw’s last synagogue situated on the left bank of Vistula river that survived World War II. It is one out of two functioning synagogues in the city. Before the war, 400 synagogues and prayer houses were at disposal of the world’s largest Jewish community. Today, Nożyk Synagogue is part of a Jewish community center.

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Bródno Jewish Cemetery Revisited

Bródno Jewish cemetery in Warsaw is an extraordinary place. There are intact cemeteries or there are destroyed cemeteries, where no or only a few remains of the former purpose are still visible. Bródno Jewish cemetery is the visibility of destruction.

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“Present, Absent – Jewish Heritage in Eastern Europe” Photo Exhibition Opened in Berlin

So far, I exclusively exhibited black and white photos. For the first time, the show in Auferstehungskirche in Berlin’s district Friedrichshain assembles some of my colour photos. Places do not only have a past, they also have a present. Colour photography may express this better.

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A Jewish Necropolis

There is a competition between Warsaw, Vienna, Łódź  and Berlin, who has the biggest Jewish cemetery in Europe. With 43 hectares and 115.000 burials the cemetery in Berlin’s suburb Weißensee is at least one of the biggest. I had a walk there.

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Snow covered Cemeteries

Winterly Galicia looks beautiful. But iced roads can be dangerous and a cold wind was blowing today, when I was out with friend and driver Vasyl to visit the Jewish cemeteries in Shchyrets, Rozdil and Mykolaiv. We discovered some real masterpieces of stone carving.

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Inside Jakob Glanzer Shul

Jakob Glanzer Shul is one of the last remaining synagogues in Lviv. The building is in bad condition; an adjuncting wall already collapsed. Since years a young man fights for the preservation of the synagogue. I met him today.

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