Štěpán Bartoš – Unsichtbare Synagogen
Note opening hours
Klienebergerplatz 1, 02763 Zittau, Germany
On 27 January 1945, the concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau was liberated by the Red Army. Since 2006, the victims of the crimes of National Socialist Germany have been commemorated worldwide on this day. As a contribution to the municipal commemoration in Zittau, the Hillersche Villa, in cooperation with Kultur Aktiv, will open an exhibition by the artist Štěpán Bartoš, which shows “disappeared” synagogues in the Czech Republic, on the eve of the event at Café Jolesch with a musical and content-related accompanying programme. The exhibition can be visited during the opening hours of Café Jolesch until 31.03.2023.
A photographic project by Štěpán Bartoš about the Jewish places of worship in Bohemia that disappeared during the Protectorate period, the post-war period 1945-1948 and the long period of communist totalitarianism until 1989.
Of the numerous synagogues that once stood in what is now the Czech Republic, a large number have disappeared from the face of the earth since the 1940s. The number of places of assembly of Jewish communities permanently decreased due to looting, disinterest and conversions both during nationalism and communism. In areas where the German inhabitants were expelled and the original Jewish communities gave in, entire urban units were redeveloped and converted. The history of the buildings from this location was forgotten, but the photographer Štěpán Bartoš, who works in Pardubice, visited over 150 former synagogue sites and recorded the gaps photographically.
For the exhibits, the surface of the photographs is mechanically or thermally processed to suggest the outlines of the synagogues that previously stood there. The works have already been shown in several places in the Czech Republic and Germany. In addition, the website unsichtbaresynagogen.eu shows all the places visited.