University of Minnesota
Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies


Arie A. Galles

Arie A. Galles was born in Uzbek SSR (now Uzbekistan) in 1944. His parent’s fled from the Nazis from Poland to Russia in 1939 and Galles was raised in Poland after the war. Galles has lived in several European cities, including Italy. He has also lived in Israel before settling in the United States in the 1960’s.¬† Fourteen Stations: Hey Yud Dalet, was a work in progress when exhibited in Absence/Presence, it has since been completed and has been exhibited at several galleries and museums as recently as 2011.

Arie GallesFourteen Stations suggests the "Stations of the Cross," as well as railroad stations, which were points of origin for deportations of Jews to concentration and death camps. Galles uses a technique in charcoal based on aerial photos of the German camps. Each is accompanied by a Gematria style poem written by Jerome Rothenberg. Each large image contains one line of the "Kaddish," the Jewish prayer for the death, which evokes only the greatest of God and does not mention death. The images also suggest "God's view of Man's work."


The burning space between one letter and the next : rule-generated poetry in Fourteen Stations by Arie Galles and Jerome Rothenberg by Geneviève Cohen-Cheminet (PDF)

Artist's Statement

Under no condition can art express the Holocaust. To withdraw art from confronting this horror, however, is to assign victory to its perpetrators. Each of us who has survived must individually affirm our humanity and existence.

As an artist and child of Shoah survivors, I have vivid memories of riding a train past the barbed wire fences of what had been the Gross-Rosen Concentration camp.

Arie GallesOn January 19, 1993, the entire Fourteen Stations project crystallized in my mind in a single flash. I immediately sketched a concept for a suite of drawings. That very night I dreamed I was handed a glass jar labeled "Soil From Auschwitz." There were the ingredients in a listing, as on any mundane product: Jews, Poles, Russians, Gypsies, Czechs, etc. Jews were the firs, and therefore, the main ingredient. The Fourteen Stations is my Kaddish for all Shoah victims.

The suite consists of fourteen charcoal drawings, accompanied by Jerome Rothenberg's poems, all framed in Jim Wallace's hand-forged wrought iron frames.

Through images recorded by their aerial reconnaissance cameras, the nazi perpetrators of the Holocaust have provided irrefutable confirmation of the extermination camps. Here is evidence in massive, industrial scale of their "Final Solution to the Jewish problem."

Humanity must remain aware that the Holocaust was a calculated, systematic commitment to the eradication of an entire people.

I offer the Fourteen Stations as icons for compassion and remembrance.

- Arie A. Galles

Artworks: Absence/Presence

Fourteen Stations: Hey Yud Dalet

Artwork by Arie Galles
Poems by Jerome Rothenberg


Gross Rosen

Babi Yar

Bergen Belsen











Khurbn Prologue

Page updated 2013.