Project Talk: Portraits and Memories

The Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide
Monday 5 September 2016, 6:30pm-8pm

Portraits and memories is an ongoing and expanding exhibition and education program launched by the Federation of Jewish Communities in Serbia (FJCS) that portrays the Jewish Community of Serbia and the wider territory of ex-Yugoslavia before the Holocaust. The exhibition explores and shows one part of a newly established digital archive of pre-Holocaust era photographs and recorded testimonies of Holocaust survivors of the Jewish Community in Serbia. The digital archive currently holds a collection of more than 6,000 digitalized private and family photographs and around 280 recorded testimonies in an audio-video and textual formats. Therefore, the exhibition can be viewed as wider historical, cultural, social and technological progression through the everyday life of a society at the beginning of the 20th century.

Following a brief history of photography at the first half of the 20th century, the exhibition opens up a dialogue on the ways in which personal histories, memory and photography tell a story that are testaments to humanity. The exhibition also explores private photographs which were taken during the Holocaust by families who went into hiding in their home country or as tourists abroad. These photographs, often made as snapshots or holiday photos – landscape or cityscape shots, increase in contrast when we know the context of the image.

For further information about this project:

Andrea Palašti is a visual artist, independent curator and lecturer, based in Novi Sad, Serbia. Andrea holds a master’s degree in Photography at the Academy of Art, University of Novi Sad. In 2015, she graduated with a PhD in Art and media theory from the University of Arts in Belgrade. She is active in the field of research and exhibition practice that experiments with archives, methodologies and contextual aspects of art, which emphasizes issues of cultural geography and the everyday life. She has recently been appointed as a Lecturer in Visual communications of the Department for New media at the Academy of Art in Novi Sad, Serbia.

Dr Palašti will be in residence at the Wiener Library as an EHRI Fellow in late August and September 2016.

See here to book.

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