“Impressions of Jewish Praga” — an exhibition of photographs taken by Rafał Żebrowski

After the Second World War the Warsaw district of Praga kept the genius loci of the pre-war capital. The fascination with that part of the city, its Jewish population and architecture resulted in the exhibition held by the JHI in the Blue Tower.

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Praga was an independent city, a suburb and then an integral part of the so-called Great Warsaw. It always had its own atmosphere and folklore, to a large extent created by Jews. Everything changed in the fall of 1940 when they had to leave Praga and settle in the Warsaw Ghetto crated by the Germans on the left bank of the Vistula. .

After the war Praga kept the capital’s genius loci. Fragments of that pre-war, Jewish Praga can be seen in the photographs taken by Rafał Żebrowski, member of the JHI’s Varsavianistic Workshop. You can trace the city’s history in the beautiful shapes, tasteful forms and adornments. The scale and details of these buildings and courtyards, now damaged and neglected, allow us to learn about and remember their previous inhabitants.

The collection of photographs is complemented by three photograms of religious paintings taken by Jacek Wiśniewski, for the lending of which we thank him profusely. Zofia Borzymińska and Rafał Żebrowski prepared the captions. The overall character of the exhibit was shaped by Teresa Śmiechowska. 

The “Impressions of Jewish Praga exhibition” can be viewed at the Jewish Historical Institute (in the Blue Tower) until the end of May 2015.

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