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About The Artist
... in the concentration camps I told myself, if I survive, I must tell my story as I saw it. I painted for twenty years to develop the skill to tell it, and I wrote the first poem right after liberation, to challenge myself not to be silent. –Alice Lok Cahana
At the age of 15, Alice Lok Cahana's life was changed forever. She was brutally uprooted from the security of her home in Sárvár, Hungary, as the Nazis took her and her family to Auschwitz. Her mother, sister, two younger brothers, grandfather, aunts and uncles did not survive. In 1945, at the time of liberation, Cahana was still a young girl, one of the few children who was able to survive the torture and deprivation of concentration camp life. In 1978, she felt compelled to use her art to tell her story and the story of all the children who suffered.In 1978, I went back to our hometown. The same train that took us to Auschwitz took me back. It seemed like nothing had changed there – the town was still mute and silent – no memorial, no remembrance, no one missed us or cared. After 35 years, no one remembered that a whole community was swallowed up in smoke.
1 Barbara Rose, from Ashes to the Rainbow: A Tribute to Raoul Wallenberg, works by Alice Lok Cahana ( Los Angeles, CA : Hebrew Union College Skirball Museum, 1986) 15
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