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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Old Lviv

Many visitors think, the old town is Lviv’s oldest part. It is not. Duke Danilo built his settlement and castle on a hill north of the present old town and named it after his son Lev. Today it is a quarter around the Old Market, where once Lviv’s reform synagogue stood – blown up during the German occupation.

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Some Summer Black and Whites

After working a lot on my colour photos I finally found time to return to the analogue black and whites. Here is a selection of images I took in August during the trip to Ukraine and Moldova. Represented are Jewish cemeteries in Chişinău (Kishinev), Orhei and Vadul-Raşcov (Vadul Rashkov) in Bessarabia/Moldova, cemeteries in Rîbniţa (Rybnitsa) and Raşcov (Rashkov) in the break away “state” of Transnistria, as well as the former synagogue of Sniatyn in Galicia, Ukraine.

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A last Galician excursion

Since today I’m back home, but I have still to report on our last excursion, which led us into the Ukrainian borderlands with Poland, to Velyki Mosty, Belz and Uhniv.

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Galicia from a train window

A last goodbye to the volunteers, who clear the Jewish cemetery of Chernivtsi (Czernowitz). A last farewell to Bukovina and its capital. In the afternoon Sylvia and I took the train from Chernivtsi to Lviv. For five and a half hours we watched the beautiful Galician landscape rolling by. Now we are in Lviv – exhausted but happy – and wait for a very last excursion tomorrow.

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Kosiv today

The volunteers of SVIT Ukraine, who clear the Jewish cemetery in Chernivtsi (Czernowitz), were out for a day trip today. On the itinerary was among others the Galician town of Kosiv – famous for its local crafts market – and its Jewish cemetery. In the densely overgrown cemetery we met an old man who was mowing grass with a scythe. He had a story to tell.

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North of Czernowitz

Sylvia, Marla, Jay and I went for an excursion today, which lead us to Zastavna, Balamutivka and Vikno – all north of Chernivtsi (Czernowitz) – as well as to Sniatyn in the west. All of those towns and villages – except Vikno – had Jewish cemeteries, but they are not preserved at every place.

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To Zhovkva in Good Company

A new journey has begun. Over the next two weeks I will be traveling with my friend Sylvia de Swaan – a great photographer. The first week of our trip through Galicia, Bukovina and Bessarabia we will share with our friends and researchers Marla Raucher Osborn and Jay Osborn. Today we were in Zhovkva, about 30 kilometers north from Lviv.

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Exhibition on the Holocaust in the Galician Oil Belt opened in Cologne

On 18 February ‘A Story of Destruction and Rescue’, an exhibition documenting the Holocaust in the eastern Galician towns of  Drohobych and Boryslav was opened in Cologne. The exhibition was created by an international team from Poland, Israel, Ukraine and Germany. It was already on display in several locations in Poland and Ukraine and will be shown in more places in Israel and Ukraine this summer. The Cologne exhibition will remain open to the public until 31 March.

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