Category Archives: Art

Jewish Museum in Berlin, Germany

Jewish Museum in Berlin, Germany

The zinc-clad, jagged structure of the Jewish Museum in Berlin is likened to a deconstructed Star of David, which I find genius. Zig zagging turns, slopes, voids all designed by Daniel Libeskind, a Polish-Jewish architect based in the U.S. His idea was to invoke disorientation, loss and the destruction of Jewish Life. Every facet of the museum from the plan, shape, style, interior and exterior arrangement of the building are part of a complicated philosophical programme to illustrate the history and culture of Germany’s Jewish community and the repercussions of the Holocaust.

I purposely set out early in the morning so I could savor the silence before I entered the space located in what was West Berlin before the fall of the Wall. I believe that a Jewish Museum in Berlin offers not just a memorial but dedication to the rebirth of the Jewish people and their history. The Jewish Museum (Jüdisches Museum) has succeeded. Every place I visit, every word I write and every time I share, I honor the memory of my father, who survived eight Nazi forced labor camps.

©  hannah kozak

Entrance to The Jewish Museum – Berlin, Germany (Jüdisches Museum Berlin)

© hannah kozak

Jewish Museum – Berlin, Germany

In March 1939, the Berlin couple Ruth & Wolfgang Prager, sent their children on a transport to Sweden. Because Ruth required treatment in a sanitarium, she and Wolfgang put off emigrating until it was too late. In October 1941, they were deported to the Lodz ghetto, where they died the following year. Here is the letter they sent to their children.

© hannah kozak


“My dear children, I don’t know what to tell you because my heart is so full and words are so small and say so little. I had always hoped that we would be reunited but we are probably at a fateful juncture just now.”

© hannah kozak

Windows in the main building seen from the interior.

 © hannah kozak

Farewell scene,
Julius Rosenbaum
(1879-1956)
Berlin, 1934, chalk
The drawing shows Jewish emigrants departing from the Anhalter Bahnhof in Berlin.

© hannah kozak

When Hitler came into Power, Felix Nussbaum was on a scholarship in Rome. He did not return to Germany, but went via Switzerland and France to Belgium. After the invasion of the German troops, Nussbaum was arrested and interned in Southern France. He fled and, together with his wife, hid in Brussels. In July 1944, both were deported to Auschwitz & murdered.
Nussbaum’s late paintings tell of the period of persecution, of life in the camps, & living illegally.
“You call out and shout but not an echo returns.” wrote Nussbaum in 1937 in a letter to Ludwig Meidner.

© hannah kozak

The public debate about the murder of European Jews began in the courtroom. In 1958, German authorities started systematically investigating Nazi criminals. However, these investigations only seldom resulted in indictments. There was a lack of concrete evidence that could be used to prove suspects were personally responsible for murder. As a result, most of the charges had to be dropped. On the other hand, the court proceedings also served as a means of researching and documenting events that had taken place in the camps.
The Frankfurt Auschwitz Trial (1963-1965) ended the long silence about Nazi trials. Over 200 camp survivors gave testimony. International media reported from the courtroom.
The Dusseldorf Majdanek trial (1975-1981) was the longest trial ever held in a German court.

The Holocaust tower is a void of intimidating height with no windows, blank walls and a small slit just under the ceiling which allows in a tiny amount of light and amplifies the outside sounds. Being in this room one is completely separated from the rest of the museum (and world) which invokes a feeling of isolation while feeling the cold. This room is best visited alone to receive the full experience. It felt like having a moment, one tiny space of what it must have been like to be a prisoner in a camp, being incarcerated by the Nazis. Victor Frankl wrote of camp inmates experiencing shock, apathy, and depersonalization in Man’s Search for Meaning. I remember my father, when interviewed for Spielberg’s Shoah project, cried and explained that he choose not to share with his children when we were young because “I didn’t want them to know the suffering I went through.” The heavy door is opened and I couldn’t get out fast enough. As a second generation survivor, I experienced a brief feeling of discomfort that can never, ever come close to what my father experienced in the labor camps for years.

© hannah kozak

Inside the Holocaust Tower.

© hannah kozak

Inside the Holocaust Tower

© hannah kozak

Inside the Holocaust Tower

The Jewish Museum is dedicated to 2,000 years of history, culture and traditions of the Jewish communities in Germany. I loved the physical voids that Libeskind created throughout the building. These so-called voids extend vertically throughout the entire museum and represent the absence of Jews from German society.

The Memory Void contains a work by the Israeli artist Menace Kadishman, who calls his installation, “Shalekhet,” or “Fallen Leaves.” He has dedicated the over 10,000 faces covering the floor not only to Jews killed during the Shoah but to all innocent victims of war and violence. These 10,000 faces punched out of steel are distributed on the ground of the Memory Void. You can walk on the faces and listen to the sounds created by the metal sheets as they clang and rattle against each other. I think it’s powerful and made to unnerve.

© hannah kozak


© hannah kozak

hannah kozak – Self Portrait at
Menace Kadishman’s Shalekhet – Fallen Leaves

The Garden of Exile is forty-nine tilted pillars to represent the foundation of the state of Israel in 1948 plus one for Berlin. The garden symbolizes the forced exile of Germany’s Jews. There are concrete columns with oleaster (which look like olive but are wild) trees surrounding them. It’s not truly a garden to relax in and that’s precisely the point and intention.

© hannah kozak


Garden of Exile:
49 tilted pillars to represent the foundation of the state of Israel in 1948 plus one for Berlin. The garden symbolizes the forced exile of Germany’s Jews.

© hannah kozak

My prayer for my mother. I believe in miracles.

As I exited the museum and began to find the train station that I came from, I began my solitary walk looking at people, trees, sidewalks, cafes, buses, bicyclists. Walking helps me to simultaneously quiet my mind while thinking. My thoughts flow better when I am moving my legs. Walking helps me reclaim myself as I am recently overworked, which feels like self escape. Unable to turn off the demands at work by not switching off my phone, I am invigorated by walking and being disconnected. I am inspired by the cold air and rain and relish the surprises I find when simply wandering. I have always been motivated to photograph exactly what my eyes see.

© hannah kozak

As I was leaving the Jewish Museum.

In Augustiner’s Restaurant, I was captivated by these two men’s faces while the Festival of Lights was endlessly compelling.

© hannah kozak

Augustiner’s Restaurant

© hannah kozak

Berlin Festival of Lights

© hannah kozak

Self Portrait – Jewish Museum

“A Jew must believe in miracles. If a Jew doesn’t believe in miracles, he is not a realist.” – Simon Wiesenthal

Jewish Museum in Berlin, Germany


4th edition of the Biennial of Fine Art and Documentary Photography – Berlin Foto Biennale 2016

4th Edition of Biennial of Fine Art & Documentary Photography

Throughout October 2016 Berlin welcomes once again the largest German festival for photography–the 7th European Month of Photography. The Grand opening of the 4th Biennial is at the elegant Palazzo Italia, situated in the historic heart of of Berlin as Associated Partner of the EMOP Berlin the first edition of the Berlin Foto Biennale.

© hannah kozak

Olivia always finds her way!


I have the honor of being one of the finalists in the 7th Edition of the Julia Margaret Cameron Award for Female Photographers in the Nude and Figure category. One of my photos from my Pain and Loneliness series was chosen to be on exhibit.

@ hannah kozak

Pain and Loneliness 33

I’m also honored to be included in the special section about the Holocaust and Second Generation with works by Aliza Augustine, Hannah Kozak, Sebastian Holzknecht, Beth Bursting, Vienne Rea and Quyen Pfeiffer. I was also given the honor of 1st prize documentary photo from the series He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard and 1st prize children’s category. Show opened on October 6, 2016 and will run through October 30.

@ hannah kozak

Auschwitz-Birkenau, Belzec, Sobibor Triptych
by hannah kozak.

Five of my images from my ongoing series–He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard were finalists in the 8th Edition of the Julia Margaret Cameron Award.

@ hannah kozak

He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard

@ hannah kozak

He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard

@ hannah kozak

He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard

@ hannah kozak

He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard

© hannah kozak

He Threw the Last Punch Too Hard

Here are some other photographer’s works from the Binnial 2016.

© hannah kozak

Marea Reed, Australia
Mareareed.com
Cooling the Blood, 2014

Mareareed.com

© hannah kozak

Boguslaw Maslak,
bobbyart.com
United Kingdom
Spirit of Ganges, 2013

Bobbyart.com

© hannah kozak

Isabel Karl-Herunter
Austria
Back to Paradise, 2014

© hannah kozak

Marilyn Maxwell,
United States
MarilynMaxwellphoto.com
Long Reach, 2014, Tanzania

Marilynmaxwellphoto.com

© hannah kozak

Chris Scavotto

© hannah kozak

Aline Smithson,
Alinesmithson.com
Lucy in Turquoise, 2013

Alinesmithson.com

© hannah kozak

Sebastian Holzknecht,
sebastianholzknecht.com
Jacek, from the series “Not Guilty”

sebastianholzknecht.com

© hannah kozak

Andrea Star Reese,
United States
Andreastarreese.com
Disorder 01, 2010

andreastarreese.com

©hannah kozak

Steve McCurry,
Walking on High Ground, Bangladesh, 1983

© hannah kozak

Karmen Corak, Italy
CL1, 2014, Spain

https://www.facebook.com/karmen.corak

4th Edition of Biennial of Fine Art & Documentary Photography


Finding my way around Berlin, Germany

Finding my way around Berlin, Germany

I traveled to Berlin for the opening of the Berlin Foto Biennial 2016, where I am part of the Second Generation Holocaust photographers exhibit with a triptych from my seven year, ongoing series called Survivor, a study on my father’s survival of eight Nazi forced labor camps.

© hannah kozak

Another reason for Berlin’s appeal for me is its volatility, its traumatic history. I feel a Berlin traumatized by its historical suffering, its emotional past. There is almost a haunting aspect to the city. A city where Hitler came to power in 1933, the site of the infamous Olympic games in 1936, Kristallnacht – where Jewish properties were attacked and set on fire in 1938, Hitler’s headquarters–and the place where the Führer took his last breath & World War II from 1938 to 1945. A historic, reunited capital where a 96.2 miles long wall divided family and friends for 28 years, the only border fortification in history built to keep people from leaving rather than to protect them. Berlin is a capital that has been the most powerful and also fallen to the lowest of lows. Yet Berlin is also a city of tolerance, liberalism, a center of the arts and truly a cutting edge cultural center of Europe.

© hannah kozak

The remains of the Wall. It was officially referred to as the “Anti-Fascist Protective Wall.” Built overnight starting 13 August 1961. The wall completely cut off West Berlin from surrounding East Germany until it was opened in November 1989. (The actual demolition did not begin until the summer of 1990 and was completed in 1992.)

I spent time years ago in Frankfurt, when I was working in the publishing world and attended the annual Frankfurt Book Fair but Frankfurt does not hold the appeal for me that Berlin does. Berlin is tucked away in the north-eastern area of Germany and is only 49.7 miles from another favorite place I love–Poland.

As I walk along Friedrichstrasse, I think about the great German artist Käthe Kollwitz, regarded as the most important German artist of the twentieth century who worked with drawing, etching, lithography, woodcuts, painting, printmaking and sculpture. Käthe Kollwitz captured the hardships suffered by the working class in drawings, paintings, and prints. She went to Munich to study at the Women’s Art School. She didn’t want to be controlled by her father and also wanted freedom as a married woman.

The death of her youngest son in battle in 1914 profoundly affected her, and she expressed her grief in another cycle of prints that treat the themes of a mother protecting her children and of a mother with a dead child. Kollwitz lost her husband in 1940, her grandson during WWII in 1942. She created timeless art works after suffering a life of great sorrow and heartache believing that art not only can but should change the world. Kollwitz created art that stirred emotions, incited action and served the people.For twelve years; from 1924 to 1932 Kollwitz also worked on a granite monument for her son, which depicted her husband and herself as grieving parents. In 1932 it was erected as a memorial in a cemetery near Ypres, Belgium. Her art did not serve the state thus Hitler hated what she created. In 1936 she was barred by the Nazis from exhibiting, her art classified as degenerate and was removed from galleries. Kollwitz said “All my work hides within in life itself, and it is with life that I contend through my work.”

Käthe Kollwitz-Woman w/dead child - 1903.

Käthe Kollwitz-Woman w/dead child – 1903.

I also think of The Berlin Trilogy–David Bowie’s creative apex where he wrote three consecutively released studio albums that Bowie referred to as his DNA: Low (1977), Heroes (1977) and Lodger (1979). Bowie moved to Berlin to escape the drug scene in Los Angeles (yet fell back on his bad habits initially). Berlin became Bowie’s sanctuary because he could be more anonymous there than in Los Angeles. His genius was his constant desire to reinvent himself. Low and Heroes were both recorded at Hansa Studios, known then as “Hansa by the Wall” because the Berlin Wall could be seen from the control room. I loved Lodger, a concept album about a homeless traveler. I can still hear the lyrics from Breaking Glass on the Low album. “You’re such a wonderful person, but you got problems.” I always loved Bowie because he rejected conformity, truly he was out of the box.

David Bowie - Low

David Bowie – Low – Released 14 January 1977

David Bowie - Heroes

David Bowie – Heroes – Released 14 October 1977

David Bowie - Lodger

David Bowie – Lodger – Released 14 January 1979

The nights were cold and windy and often rainy yet I feel invigorated coming from the recent relentless heat and two hour daily commutes in Los Angeles. Instead of sitting in a car for hours of traffic, I am free to roam about walking from trains to trams to underground travel.

© hannah kozak

Oranienburg Straße ( a street in central Berlin located in the borough of Mitte, north of the River Spree and runs south-east) & Friedrichstraße.) A major culture and shopping street in central Berlin, which forms the core of the Friedrichstraße neighborhood. It runs from the Northern part of the old Mitte district.

I chose the Melia Berlin Hotel for multiple reasons but mainly for the location along the river Spree, on the corner of Friedrichstrasse and Am Weidendamn and only 100 meters from Friedrichstraße Station which provided me with great underground, city rail, and tram links to all parts of Berlin. Not to mention their restaurant with an extensive menu of Spanish tapas which is one of my favorite ways to eat in the world. I ended up never eating at the tapas bar because I was enjoying the German food so much.

© hannah kozak

Meliá Berlin Hotel adjacent to the River Spree on Friedrichstraße 103.

S-Bahnhof Friedrichstraße Station used to be the border station between East and West Berlin. Built in 1882 to a design by Johannes Vollmer, a roof was added in 1925 that covers the hall and & the platforms. The only remaining structure from the original station is the special pavilion once used as a waiting room by those waiting for emigration clearance. The nickname of “Palace of Tears” refers to Berliners from different sides of the city would say goodbye to each other after a visit.

© hannah kozak

Friedrichstrasse Main Station – It is located on the Friedrichstraße, a major north-south street in the Mitte district of Berlin, adjacent to the point where the street crosses the Spree river

I ventured out in the rain (it is a venture because of my cameras) to find the Brandenburg Gate, an 18th century neoclassical monument and symbol of European unity and peace. The site of major historical events, it is considered a symbol of the tumultuous history of Europe and Germany. It is truly the quintessential symbol of Berlin and one of the few remaining historic city gates. I had the bonus of being there during Berlin’s Festival of Lights– famous landmarks beautifully lit up by lights.

© hannah kozak

Brandenburg Tor – Lit up for the Festival of Lights 2016

The gate is one block south to the Holocaust Memorial or Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe; a truly radical concept for a memorial. The construction of this memorial for the Jews killed by the Nazis between 1933 and 1945 began April 1, 2003 and was finished December 15, 2004. Designed by US architect Peter Eisenmann, it covers 205,000 square feet. It’s above ground, an undulating field of 2,711 visible, graffiti-resistant coating concrete slabs which you can enter from all sides and walk through. They are organized in rows, 54 of them going north–south, and 87 heading east–west at right angles but set slightly askew. The memorial leaves you to contemplate the meaning of the design. I returned multiple times during the day and the evening. Rain slowly flowing down the slabs looked like tears to me.

© hannah kozak

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe

© hannah kozak

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (also known as the Holocaust Memorial) created by architect Peter Eisenman and engineer Buro Happold. Building began 1 April 2003, and finished 15 December 2004. Designed to produce an uneasy, confusing atmosphere.
I made this photo with my Rolleiflex,and included the green tree to show that even though millions of Jews were murdered including all my father’s family, we always stand tall again.

Around the corner is the Hotel Adlon, which opened its doors in 1907. It was largely destroyed in 1945, in the closing days of World War II. The new building is a design largely inspired by the original, other sources say only loosely inspired by the original. Only a two minute walk from the Brandenburg Gate and three minutes from the Berlin Wall, Greta Garbo and Charlie Chaplin stayed here but my real reason for wanting to view it was because Michael Jackson stayed in the presidential suite. On Tuesday, Nov 19, 2002, he was caught up in the moment and showed his baby nicknamed Blanket to the fans waving below his balcony.

Here are some photos I made my first day and night wandering the streets in Berlin.

© hannah kozak

En route to the Brandenburg Gate.

© hannah kozak

I love birds and their shadows.

© hannah kozak

Vaporetto Restaurant- A dear friend introduced me to this Italian restaurant on Albrechtstraße 12.

© hannah kozak

Heading back to my hotel from Vaporetto Restaurant.

© hannah kozak

Wandering the streets en route to the Spree River.

© hannah kozak

Rainy night in Berlin

© hannah kozak

The River Spree

“Berlin -The greatest cultural extravaganza that one could imagine.”
David Bowie

Finding my way around Berlin, Germany


Why I’m Lighting Yahrzeit Candles on Christmas – My Father’s Hands & Feet

Fine Art Photographer shares intimate moments from death

W. Eugene Smith said photographs can summon enough emotion to be a catalyst to thought. A writer writes about someone’s struggles as an act of compassion and caring.  Giving shape to something painful helps us to process our grief by sharing it. Sharing words and photos decreases the burden we are carrying. By sharing my feelings and photos, perhaps I reach another person who is or has carried the burden of grief. Just as I take refuge in travel, I find healing in sharing. Author Dorothy Allison said if you don’t break out in a sweat of fear of what you write, you have not gone far enough. This one made me sweat.

My father began to leave his physical body after only two nights in the hospital. His last request was a black bean burrito, no guacamole, from Poquito Mas. I brought it to him for lunch, not knowing that it would be his last meal. Watching my father die in a sterile hospital seemed like a privilege compared to how his entire family was killed at Auschwitz and Treblinka by gassing.I felt blessed I could have the opportunity to mourn my father in a way he never could mourn his family in Poland, because he never saw any of their bodies after they were killed.

I was witness to the process of his body shutting down. At any given moment, either one or more of my brothers was in the room or my sister or niece, nephew, and the endless stream of nurses with machines to keep checking him so billing could continue even after he was heading through the astral plane. My sister refused to leave because he asked her not to leave him alone. She slept in the bed next to his. I would go home to sleep and no matter when I returned, she was in the room.   As my sister held his hand, I was pained by the thinness of his skin. I kept caressing the paper-thin skin on his arm, as if my rubbing could keep his arm from bleeding more. I had one-way conversations with my father. I kept telling him it was okay for him to go to G-d. I knew he could hear me.

As I always did in life, I continued to make photos as his death was imminent. The process was exhausting and while some may view the photos as callous, for myself it was more that I wanted one last look at my father, the man who taught me to stand on my own two feet. From a higher perspective than judgment, these photos are about love.  I was attempting, in my humble way, to make sense of his departure from my world and his. By documenting my father’s death, I was reaching out for one last moment of immortality, trying to make sense of his journey back home to G-d.

© hannah kozak

I saw my father reach for someone that was not part of this world. In that moment, with that reach, my father showed me there is more than just this life. Photography is death of a moment.Death is the eidos of the photograph. According to Roland Barthes in Camera Lucida, the book he wrote in 1979 hailed as the “subtle, most original, most sympathetic literary intelligence of the age” a photograph is a return of the dead.Death is the great equalizer.  We turn into energy and disappear. My father gave me a great gift before he left his physical body. I was on his left side, my sister was on his right. He reached out past me, towards the ceiling, the heavens. “Grab his hand, Hannah” my sister said. “He’s reaching for you.” “No I said” immediately and without hesitation. “He’s not reaching for me.”

My oldest brother and my sister were in the room with my father and I at the end. His hands and feet grew swollen as his skin both softened and wrinkled. On Christmas Eve, I watched his inhale become short and labored until there was barely an inhale left and mainly his exhale. Then, on Christmas morning, the final inhale that lasted too long, a labored gurgled exhale, which made my sister jump, and his soul left the space. Silence. The machine helping him breathe was still inhaling and exhaling for him. He was not. “What do we do” my brother asked to anyone who might have an answer. I said “Don’t call the nurses yet. I need a moment alone with him.”

© hannah kozak

© hannah kozak


It was an honor to be with him until the end. I experienced a surreal and grounding experience. Hospice nurse, Maggie Callanan has witnessed more than two thousand deaths and says “dying people have the uncanny ability to choose the moment of death, and it’s not uncommon for them to spare those they love the most or feel protective of by waiting until those people leave the room.”  I’ve heard so many stories of people waiting until their loved ones left the room before they die. Not my father, he really never liked being alone. Leaning into my father, I smelled decay. I gently removed his blue and white socks off his swollen feet and tucked them into my purse, where I found them ten days later, rolled up in a ball.  I feel sad, numb, but also relief that he isn’t suffering any more.
I made some photos of his hands as he was in the hospital, as well as over the years. I loved my father’s hands and feet.
© hannah kozak 24 April 2010

©hannah kozak

25 April 2010

25 April 2010

27 April 2012

© hannah kozak

19 May 2012

27 June 2012

27 June 2012

27 June 2012

27 June 2012

26 June 2012

26 June 2012

25 Sept 2012

25 Sept 2012

I often wondered about his hands. Those strong hands dug potatoes with two friends from the barracks in the hard, dirt ground, in the dark, as he was a prisoner who worked in eight Nazi camps. The next night he decided not to go out  when his friends started to leave. Not only were his friends caught but their punishment for stealing potatoes was death.  He told me about taking his hand and wiping the back of his neck, seeing it filled with crawling vermin from the filthy conditions in the forced labor camps he lived in.

His feet, I wondered about the towns he walked in Poland alone, after a year in the hospital, looking for his family after he was liberated from Dernau on May 8, 1945.  I can’t imagine what it felt like to know there wasn’t one family member or friend on the face of the earth who knew who he was. No one who remembered one of his birthdays, no one to recall a favorite story with, no one to share a “remember when we ditched school” laugh.

My photographs are the voice that continues after my father’s death. In some way, my photos keep him alive. They remind me of the strong wings he had to develop because he had to learn to fly solo. I feel honored my father choose me to walk with him to the end of his road on the earth plane and I found beauty in the midst of my grief. The shroud of death followed my father throughout his life but his strength and tenacity created rebirth and resurrection. There was no closure from the losses of his entire family during the war but his hope kept him moving forward until it was time for him to go back home, one more time. His death, a learning process and experience he left behind, for those who will follow someday.

©hannah kozak

(The opening lines of James Fenton’s A German Requiem)

A German Requiem – James Fenton

It is not what they built.

It is what they knocked down.

It is not the houses. It is the spaces in between the houses.

It is not the streets that exist. It is the streets that no longer exist.

It is not your memories which haunt you.

It is not what you have written down.

It is what you have forgotten, what you must forget.

What you must go on forgetting all your life.

And with any luck oblivion should discover a ritual.

You will find out that you are not alone in the enterprise.

Yesterday the very furniture seemed to reproach you.

Today you take your place in the Widow’s Shuttle.

“There are too many of us and we are all too far apart.” ― Kurt Vonnegut

Fine Art Photographer shares intimate moments from death


Magical Budapest

Magical Budapest

Budapest has been on my sights for a long time. Despite modern development, Budapest retains magic and old charm around every corner. Buda and Pest were separate towns on opposite banks of the Danube River until 1873, when they were merged. They developed independently and the result is two unique regions; both exquisite.

@ hannah kozak

Danube River – Budapest, Hungary

I stayed on the Buda side of the Danube River, on a recommendation by a friend from Budapest. The area was calm, peaceful and filled with the beauty of green and trees all around me. I traveled daily to catch either the tram, trolley and metro depending on where I wanted to explore. A ten minute stroll and I was in the Castle District and there, I spent the day walking the streets, feeling as if I have traveled back in time to a quiet, peaceful world where I see Baroque residential homes next to ancient Roman stones.

@ hannah kozak

Trams on Buda side

@ hannah kozak

Cat on Buda side

@ hannah kozak

Man on street with cigarette

Here is Mathais Church, which is over 700 years old. The colorful character of the church is the manifestation of the cultural interchange on the borderline between East and West. It’s a unique interior created at the end of the 19th century by Bertalan Székely – the leading painter of the age and Frigyes Schuliek – architect.

© Hannah Kozak

Mathias Church in Budapest, Hungary

The Jewish Quarter, where I went back twice to spend time at the Great Synagogue, the largest Jewish house of worship in Europe. It was built in 1859 and has both Moorish and romantic elements.

© hannah kozak

The Great Synagogue Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

The Great Synagogue
Budapest, Hungary


© hannah kozak

The Great Synagogue
Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Star of David @ The Great Synagogue

© hannah kozak

Star of David – The Great Synagogue

I spent time at the Holocaust Memorial’s metal “tree of life”, designed by Imre Varga in 1991. If you look closely, you can see family names of some of the hundreds of thousands of victims.

© hannah kozak

The Tree of Life
Budapest, Hungary

Made my way into a building inside the Great Synagogue and asked to see this antique book:

© hannah kozak

Register of Jewish Survivors in Budapest

Wandering the streets on the Pest side.

© hannah kozak

Budapest

© hannah kozak

@hannah kozak- Budapest, Hungary

 © hannah kozak

Budapest street

© hannah kozak

Budapest Street Art 2

In Belváros, the inner city of the historical old town of Pest is Rumbach Street Synagogue, located in the eastern section of Budapest.

The synagogue in Rumbach Street was built in 1872 to the design of the Viennese architect Otto Wagner. It served the Status Quo Ante community. It was built not as an exact replica of, but as an homage to the style of the octagonal, domed Dome of the Rock Muslim shrine in Jerusalem.

© hannah kozak

Rumbach Street Synagogue -Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Rumbach Street Synagogue 2 – Budapest, Hungary

@ hannah kozak

Hannah Kozak-Self Portrait Rumbach Synagogue

© hannah kozak

Rumbach Street Synagogue – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Two men at Rumbach Street Synagogue – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Door on Pest Side
Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

© hannah kozak
Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Man on street – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Boy on Street – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Man in Coffee Shop – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Metro Station – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Wandering through Budapest

© hannah kozak

Girls in Deli at hotel where MJ stayed – Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Jewish Quarter – Pest Side,
Budapest, Hungary
I love the detailed tiles on this building

© hannah kozak

© hannah kozak

Always on the look out for wandering cubs and I lucked out when I found this dog who loved to play catch. I’ve never seen a dog leap so high!

© hannah kozak

Leaping dog in Budapest

© hannah kozak

Leaping Dog in Budapest 2

© hannah kozak

Leaping Dog 3 in Budapest, Hungary

© hannah kozak

Little Leaping Dog in Budapest

© hannah kozak

Women On Street – Budapest, Hungary

Magical Budapest


Sandra Klein: An Artist with Heart

Sandra Klein: An Artist with Heart

Meeting Sandra Klein in an Aline Smithson class was a gift. Sandra was doing intricate hand embroidered stitching on her photography and I was deeply moved and touched by the detail in her art. Her photographs are poems, and her self portraits are layered with her beautiful heart. She adds text that resonates for her and explores loss, aging and family. Goethe said we see in the world what we carry in our heart and Sandra finds beauty in every corner of her world and her heart. Sandra is also an expert printmaker, with a BFA in printmaking.

Sandra Klein is in a group show running January 11 – April 2, 2015 at the American Jewish University called Wisdom:The Tree of Life.

http://aboutus.aju.edu/Default.aspx?id=7286

Etz Chaim, The Tree of Life is referred to throughout the Torah and is central to Jewish thought, wisdom and teaching. The tree of life is a symbol of knowledge, strength and identity, is in fact, found throughout all spiritual communities. It is often used as a reoccurring theme in poems, songs and visual art both historically and through to present day. The exhibition, Wisdom, The Tree of Life, explores the significance of the tree through the work of four Southern California based artists: Isaac Brnjegard-Bialik, Sandra Klein, Maddy Le Mel and Karen V. Woo.

Sandra Klein-Whisper

Sandra Klein –
Whisper
Archival pigment print
2014

Sandra Klein:  Tea Garden Archival pigment print 2014

Sandra Klein:
Tea Garden
Archival pigment print
2014

Sandra Klein:  Shimmer Archival Pigment Print 2014

Sandra Klein:
Shimmer
Archival Pigment Print
2014

Sandra Klein:  Green Island Archival Pigment Print 2014

Sandra Klein:
Green Island
Archival Pigment Print
2014

Sandra Klein: Early Spring Archival Pigment Print 2014

Sandra Klein:
Early Spring
Archival Pigment Print
2014

Sandra Klein: Snake Tree Archival Pigment Print 2014

Sandra Klein:
Snake Tree
Archival Pigment Print
2014

Sandra Klein: The Calling Archival pigment print 2014

Sandra Klein:
The Calling
Archival pigment print
2014

Sandra Klein Wisdom: The Tree of Life

Sandra Klein
Wisdom: The Tree of Life

Here is Sandra Klein and another photographer and friend Susan Swihart. Susan is part of a collective in Los Angeles known as The Verge. Susan is an observer, a caring mother of three, a committed artist who finds time to create personal observations and was recently featured on Lenscratch:

http://lenscratch.com/2014/10/susan-swihart-if-only/

Susan Swihart, Sandra Klein

Susan Swihart, Sandra Klein

Sandra Klein, a Jewish soul sister, who, like all of us, is in search of herself. Sandra doesn’t claim to have the answers to life, which makes her all the more lovely to be near. Sandra seems to embody what Goethe wrote about: “If you can imagine it, you can create it.”

Sandra Klein

Sandra Klein

Sandra Klein

Sandra Klein

Sandra Klein: An Artist with Heart

Goethe quote

Goethe quote


Photo LA & Classic Photos LA 2015

Photo LA & Classic Photos 2015

From back in the days when Photo LA was at Santa Monica Airport to the latest venue in DTLA at The REEF in the historic LA Mart building, Photo LA is ever evolving and provides me with a way to cross paths with many photography friends. I stopped by JDC Fine Art and was taken by various photography by Paul Cava, and Paul Turonet’s photography & art. I have loved Marjorie Salvaterra’s photography from the moment I saw her black and white series, Her.

@jdc Fine Art

Paul Cava, Belatage (Blue)
2008
Archival Pigment Print
11 1/2 x 18 3/4 in.
Edition #2/5

@ jdc Fine Art

Paul Turonet
Tierra Brava explores the challenges, struggles and hopes of life in Mexico along the U.S.-Mexico border. saddle-stitch book with 50 color prints, 1 loose print in folder, 1 double-sided map in brown box.

@ jdc Fine Art

Marjorie Salvaterra
When the Universe Has a Bigger Plan For Your Life, 2012
Archival Pigment Print
16 x 24 in. Edition of 20

Marjorie Salvaterra Her - book

Marjorie Salvaterra
Her – book

Shulamit Gallery’s mission it to broaden cross-cultural awareness and understanding through contemporary art. Their primary focus is Middle Eastern artists of diverse backgrounds like Jessica Shokrian, whose self portraiture resonated with me.

http://www.shulamitgallery.com

http://shulamitgallery.com/jessica-shokrian/

Shulamit Gallery

Jessica Shokrain
Boardroom Power Struggle
(Polaroid Series)
2000-2012

Shulamit Gallery

Jessica Shokrian
Boardroom Power Struggle

Amanasalto, a premium photography and publishing company in Tokyo, Japan. The following are all from Amanasalto’s book: Imogen Cunningham, The Eye of Imogen Cunningham.

http://amanasalto.com

Amanasalto

Imogen Cunningham,
Unmade Bed
1957
Platinum and palladium print, 2013
20 x 24 inches
Edition: Open

Amanasalto

Frida Kahlo Rivera

Amanasalto

Imogen Cunningham,
1928

Amanasalto

Imogen Cunningham
The Eye of Imogen Cunningham
Mirror 2, 1923

Photographer Dan Fauci’s Untitled Sharon Lockhart

@ hannah kozak

Dan Fauci
Sharon Lockhart
Untitled, 1996
Chromogenic print

David Skernick

David Skernick
The Rat Queen, 2015
11 x 14 inches
Archival photograph
Edition 1/15

Aline Smithson’s Revisiting Beauty made the Critical Mass Top 50 for 2014. Smithson captures girls between the ages of 14 – 17 on the cusp of womanhood not fully aware of their own loveliness and physical presence.

This series is inspired by portrait paintings from the eighteenth to the twentieth century including artists West, De La Roche, Stroganov, Sargent, Whistler, Hockney and portraits created in the mid 1900’s by many anonymous painters. Her background as a painter also informs this work. There is a dreamy quality to this series not to mention Smithson shoots with film, giving increased depth and richness to her work always and in particular to Revisiting Beauty.

www.alinesmithson.com

Alinesmithson. com

Aline Smithson
Revisiting Beauty

alinesmithson.com

Aline Smithson
Pink Feathers, 2013

Shot of Elizabeth Taylor, who never gave a damn what anyone thought.

Timothy White Elizabeth Taylor Culver City, 2000 Archival Pigment Print 40 x 30 inches Ed. 23 of 25

Timothy White
Elizabeth Taylor
Culver City, 2000
Archival Pigment Print
40 x 30 inches
Ed. 23 of 25

Benno Graziani belonged to the founding team of Paris-Match in 1949. He was an exceptional journalist, war photographer, reporter and editor-in-chief who lived intensely the great era of magazines. Suffice it to say it was he who inspired Fellini for La Dolce Vita.

Benno Graziani Jackie Writing,  Ravello, August 1962 Edition 7/10 Silver gelatin, Printed later. Size 23. 6 x 15.7 in/60x 40 cm Captioned, dated, stamped and signed on back

Benno Graziani
Jackie Writing,
Ravello, August 1962
Edition 7/10
Silver gelatin, Printed later.
Size 23. 6 x 15.7 in/60x 40 cm
Captioned, dated, stamped and signed on back

Another photograph by Benno Graziani of Jackie Onassis:

Benno Graziani Jackie and Paparazzi, Amalfi, August 1962 Edition 5/10 Silver gelatin. Printed later. Size 23.6 x 15.7 in / 60 x 40 cm Captioned, dated, stamped and signed on back.

Benno Graziani
Jackie and Paparazzi, Amalfi, August 1962
Edition 5/10
Silver gelatin. Printed later.
Size 23.6 x 15.7 in / 60 x 40 cm
Captioned, dated, stamped and signed on back.

Photo-eye Gallery

Curtis Wehrfritz
He Speaks with the raven, first as a boy
Collodion on Velvet Board, 1 of 1
54″ x 36″, 74″ x 52″ w/Frame

Nick Brandt

Nick Brandt
Lion Family Portrait
Maasai Mara, 2003
Archival Pigment Print
29.5″ x 36.75″

Kamil Vognar

Kamil Vognar
Island
Mixed Media on canvas
30″ x 30″

Tom Chambers

Tom Chambers
Burn to Shine
Archival Pigment Ink Print
20 x 20 inches

John Dominis

John Dominis
Steve McQueen with pistol at home, Palm Springs, California, 1963
Gelatin silver print, estate bind stamp

Susan Swihart is part of a photography collective known as VERGE, which is sponsored by Duncan Miller in L.A. Swihart an observer who takes pictures to capture small moments and translates her personal experiences into shared ones.

Susan Swihart

Susan Swihart,
Verge Photographers

I just loved the way this man was holding his baby.

I just loved the way this man was holding his baby.

Classic Photos 2015 at the newly remodeled spaces at Bonhams on Sunset featured 20th century artists with vintage masterworks as well as wonderful 19-century material. It originally began with ten exhibitors and now has twenty seven galleries and dealers from four countries.

Michael Dawson Gallery in Los Angeles. Since 1905, Dawson’s Book Shop has been a leading source in Southern California for rare and out of print books in the fields of California history, Western Americana and photography. In fact, Dawson’s is the oldest continuously operating book shop in the city of Los Angeles. Ernest Dawson started the shop in downtown Los Angeles.

After three moves downtown and a transfer of ownership to the second generation of Glen and Muir Dawson, the shop settled on Larchmont Boulevard in the Hollywood/Hancock Park area in 1968. Michael Dawson marks the third generation of the Dawson family to helm this Los Angeles treasure. He had a gorgeous selection of classic photography.

http://www.dawsonbooks.com

Judy Dater

Judy Dater:
Self portrait with stone
1981, gelatin silver

Edward Weston, Nude

Edward Weston:
Nude
1920, printed 1977, Platinum

Lou Stoumen

Lou Stoumen, Black Cat Bar & Brothel, San Juan, P.R.
1941, printed later.
Gelatin Silver

The Scott Nichols Gallery is a fine art photography gallery located in downtown San Francisco. His gallery shows a combination of established, up and coming and contemporary photographers. Scott Nichols, a Southern California native, has been a private dealer since 1980 and is considered one of the experts on Group f/64 and Brett Weston.

http://www.scottnicholsgallery.com

Mona Kuhn, Merle

Mona Kuhn
Merle
2003
Fuji Crystal Archive print
30 x 30 inches

Baron Wolman, George Harrison

Baron Wolman,
George Harrison
1969
Gelatin silver print
7 x 4 3/4 inches

Horace Bristol, PBY Blister Gunner, Rescue at Rabaul

Horace Bristol,
PBY Blister Gunner, Rescue at Rabaul
1944, printed 1990’s
Gelatin Silver print
7 5/8 x 7 1/2 inches

Contemporary Works/Vintage Works

www.contemporaryworks.net
This Edward Boubat, Little Girl with Dead Leaves, is one of my favorite photographs. I love the passion of Edward Boubat. He sold his six volume dictionary to fund the purchase of his first camera: a 6 x 6 Rolleicord.

Edward Boubat Little Girl with Dead Leaves, 1946-47/1940's

Edward Boubat
Little Girl with Dead Leaves,
1946-47/1940’s

Erwin Blumenfeld Nude under Wet Silk

Erwin Blumenfeld
Nude under Wet Silk
1936/1940’s
13 1/2 x 10 1/2

Peter Fetterman Gallery

www.peterfetterman.com

Willy Ronis Isabelle, 1990

Willy Ronis
Isabelle, 1990
Gelatin Silver print
14 x 11 inches
Titled and dated in pencil with the photographer’s stamp on verso; Signed in ink on recto

Wolf Suschitzky Charing Cross Road from No. 84 (Marks & Co), 1937

Wolf Suschitzky
Charing Cross Road from No. 84 (Marks & Co), 1937
Gelatin Silver Print
20 x 16 inches
Signed, titled and dated in pencil in verso

Photo LA & Classic Photos 2015


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