Welcome to our Blog

Click here to read the what this blog is all about.
Click here to see a listing of posts arranged by category.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Samuel Bak - Holocaust Art - An Art of Ruins

Samuel Bak was born in Vilna, in 1933. At age 8 the Germans occupied the city and he moved with his family to the Vilna Ghetto. From there they were transported to the labour camps, from which he was smuggled and hid until the end of the war in a monastery. At the end of the war, only he and his mother were left alive out of an extensive family. In 1946, a year after the end of the war, young Samuel Bak refused to celebrate his barmitzva, as it seemed that he questioned his faith in God with a confusion that stays with him until today. Aged 15, he came to Israel to start anew, and began to take his artistic talent more seriously, and went to study in the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem. In 1956 he left and went to study at the Ecole des Beaux Arts, after which he painted and travelled, exhibiting his works around the world. Today, aged 76, he resides in America. Bak's childhood in Vilna, his experiences in the Holocaust, his survival, his aliya and the rest of his life spent as a wandering Jew, alone and yet a part of the collective memory of the Jewish People, all had significant influence on him and the art he created in the last 60 years.

This art reflects the Holocaust as Ruins. In his art we see ruins, fallen houses, barren stone, damaged metal, discarded wood, reconstructed debris and various other marks of trauma are found on all objects, specifically those of human making. The ruins, reflect the trauma, the broken world of his childhood and that of the Holocaust.


  1. Je déteste viscéralement ses peintures .

  2. Et bien ça me fait plaisir moi aussi je trouve ses peintures nauséeuses et elles me donnent envie de vomir. Hélène

  3. Tiens ça me fait plaisir moi aussi je n'apprécie pas du tout. Elles me dérangent . Aucune attirance pour aucune !! Claire

  4. It's odd that you all ended up here, despite your very strong opinions about the artist, the fact that the pictures do not appear, and the language of the website not being your native tongue.