An 8-minute video introduction to "Darkness into Life"

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Painting - Destination Alabama USA
"Destination Alabama USA"
by Mitzi J. Levin

The term Holocaust refers to the state-sponsored, systematic persecution and annihilation of European Jewry by Nazi Germany and its collaborators between 1933 and 1945.  It is derived from the Greek word meaning "a sacrifice by fire."  The Holocaust is not just Jewish history, it is human history.

It has been more than 70 years since the beginning of the Nazi reign of terror, during which six million Jews died, as well as hundreds of thousands of others the Nazis considered socially undesirable.  From the terrible darkness of the Holocaust to successful lives in Alabama, these Holocaust survivors embraced and enriched their new homes.

Who is a Holocaust survivor?  A Holocaust survivor is any person, Jewish or non-Jewish, who was displaced, persecuted, or discriminated against due to the racial, religious, ethnic, social, and political policies of the Nazis and their collaborators between 1933 and 1945.  In addition to former inmates of concentration camps, ghettos, and prisons, this definition includes, among others, people who were refugees or were in hiding.

For them remembering is always a complicated patchwork and journey of stories ... some of childhoods past ... others of grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters, lost friends ... some of despair and sadness ... others of cruelty beyond belief ... many of bravery ... others of the joy of liberation.

In this sensitive exhibit of photography by Becky Seitel and art by Mitzi J. Levin, one is given special glimpses into the private memories of some of Alabama's Holocaust survivors.  Becky and Mitzi spent hours visiting each survivor and listening to their stories.  They started with their memories of life before occupation and imprisonment and continued with their lives in Alabama.  The exhibit features artwork and photographs of each survivor.  Mitzi's paintings focus on life before and during imprisonment or hiding, as well as escape or liberation.  Becky's photographs tell stories about the survivors in photojournalistic style  These are bold, thought-provoking, heart-warming paintings and photographs accompanied by educational narratives that tell the stories shared by the survivors.

Through the stories of these Alabama Holocaust survivors, we hope to impart this history, as well as a richer understanding of its impact on these individuals and their families.  View their pictures.  Read their stories.  Allow this exhibition to move you.  We hope that you, too, will then say, "Never Again."


Map of Countries with Survivors

Click map to view larger image.

Countries with Survivors


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