Written by: prof. Paweł Śpiewak

On Thursday, 30th October, at the Institute at 3/5 Tłomackie Street took place the opening of the exhibition „Salvaged. Collection of painting, drawing, sculpture from the collections of the Jewish Historical Institute.” The guests, representatives of cultural institutions and embassies were welcomed by Secretary of State at the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage Piotr Żuchowski and Director of the JHI Prof. Paweł Śpiewak. 

„Our collections include unique documents and art works: photographs, sculptures, judaica and we believe that it is important to show these collections to the public. This exhibition was organized in reference to another one of similar character from 1948. Our exhibition is a symbolic replica, a reminder of the topic. It was important to us to have the vernissage of the exhibition in this special week, when the permanent exhibition at the Museum of History of Polish Jews was opened,” said the Director of the Jewish Historical Institute during the vernissage. 

A speech was also given by Secretary of State at the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage Piotr Żuchowski, who described the presented exhibition as „symbolic”, as „it shows works of artists creating during World War II, in particular unique drawings by Rosenfeld. It is good that the Jewish Historical Institute is opening this sphere of our thinking, because without this way of thinking we lose sensitivity and humanity,” the Secretary underlined.

Part of the exhibits come from the Ringelblum Archive. „In one of the metal boxes, we found, among others, over 300 drawings by Gela Seksztajn, whose works somehow constitute the heart of the first part of our exhibition. We begin anti-chronological, from the occupation period and then we go to the last floor, where we will see a fight of colour with form, that is paintings mainly by artists of Jewish descent from the interwar period. They were seeking their own artistic styles, being inspired by various world trends in art,” said Teresa Śmiechowska, the curator of the exhibition „Salvaged”.

We encourage you to visit the exhibition and also to see the photos from the event.


prof. Paweł Śpiewak   socjolog, dyrektor ŻIH w latach 2011-2020