Only a few more days to see the Robert Sutz exhibit

This is the last week to visit “We Remember: The Holocaust Art of Robert Sutz” exhibit at the Cutler-Plotkin Jewish Heritage Center.

The exhibit includes life masks of Holocaust survivors exhibited with the survivors’ stories and paintings of Holocaust scenes. The exhibit was recently featured in a blog post on Stage Mom Musings.

Sutz attributes his dedication to preserving the memory of the Holocaust to his father, who lost his whole family in concentration camps. He started with interviewing Holocaust survivors in Chicago through Steven Spielberg’s Shoah Foundation and when he makes life masks of survivors, he also interviews them to document their stories.

I had the pleasure of first meeting Mr. Sutz in 2004 when he invited me to his Scottsdale studio to watch him make a life mask of Holocaust survivor Alexander White. At the time he had made about 10 impressions of survivors and his goal was to do as many as he could “before more of them are lost.” By 2007, he had made 19 more life masks, with 11 more in progress.

In 2011, Sutz was honored at a reception recognizing his work, which by that time expanded to include 70 life masks accompanied by short biographies, 70 paintings of Holocaust scenes drawn from survivors’ memories and nine pastel portraits. At that time, the Robert Sutz We Remember Holocaust Memorial was established as a nonprofit.

Learn more about Robert Sutz’s work here.

The exhibit, presented by the Arizona Jewish Historical Society and co-sponsored by the Phoenix Holocaust Survivors’ Association, is open noon – 3 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday through Jan. 20. Docents will be available for a guided tour on Sunday.

On Sunday at 1 p.m., there will also be a free screening of “Have Hope: Arizona Holocaust Survivors Tell Their Stories,” a one-hour film that recounts the memories of Arizona Holocaust survivors through footage previously recorded in Steven Spielberg’s Survivors of the Shoah project. It is produced by the USC Shoah Foundation for the Arizona Jewish Historical Society and sponsored by the Benjamin Goldberg Memorial Trust. Call 602-241-7870.

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