Concealed Objects: Material Culture of Jewish Life in Hiding

Natalia Aleksiun's lecture will examine the experience of hiding in eastern Galicia (Western Ukraine) through the lens of material culture in the personal testimonies of Jewish men, women and children.

  • 6 July (Wednesday), 7.30 PM CET
  • Free admission
  • Place: POLIN Museum, conference room A
  • Lecture in English

In their accounts, many Holocaust survivors from eastern Europe described objects they left behind and those they retained when hiding and passing as non-Jews. These objects could be both personal and familial, generic and imbued with meaning. Some were “Jewish” by provenance used in daily lives or family celebrations, while others had easily identifiable “Jewish” character as they performed religious functions. While some were pragmatic others served as sites of loving memory. For Natalia Aleksiun, the objects are the starting point for an account of the experience of hiding Jews in eastern Galicia.

The lecture is part of the international conference "Interdisciplinary session Artistic and architectural research in the memory studies", accompanying the exhibition "Hideouts. The Architecture of Survival" exhibition in Zachęta National Gallery of Art and TRAFO Trafostacja Sztuki in Szczecin.

Learn more about the exhibition >>

Natalia Aleksiun is a Senior research fellow, Polish Institute of Advanced Studies, Warsaw/University of Florida.


The lecture is organized within the Global Education Outreach Program.

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This program was made possible thanks to Taube Philanthropies, the William K. Bowes, Jr. Foundation, and the Association of the Jewish Historical Institute of Poland.

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