Aerial Views of Nazi Concentration Camps Inspire 'Fourteen Stations/"Hey Yud Dalet' Art Exhibition -- West Coast Premiere Opens Feb. 16th

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West Coast premiere of monumental charcoal drawings based upon Luftwaffe and Allied reconnaissance photos of concentration camps opens February 16, 2006 at Soka University in South Orange County, California.

Soka University’s Founders Hall Art Gallery is proud to present the Western Coast premiere of Arie Galles’ "Fourteen Stations"/"Hey Yud Dalet," a monumental suite of charcoal drawings. The exhibition, which comes to Orange County after its recent showing at the Florida Holocaust Museum in St. Petersburg, runs from February 16, 2005 through April 28, 2006, with an opening reception on Thursday, February 16th, at 5:30 pm. Admission is free.

Fourteen Stations/Hey Yud Dalet represents Galles’ decade-long endeavor to produce 15 large-scale drawings based on aerial views of some of the most infamous Nazi concentration camps. The drawings are accompanied by the artist's shadow drawings of poems written by PEN award winning poet Jerome Rothenberg.

An epic response to the history that touched him as a Jewish child living in Poland after World War II, Galles offers the exhibition as his Kaddish, the Hebrew prayer for the dead. In fact, each drawing contains a Hebrew phrase from the Kaddish embedded within it and then obscured by layers of charcoal. When mounted in sequence, the drawings compose the entire prayer. Rothenberg’s poems are based on Gematria, a mystical Hebrew numerological system. The poem/drawings function as an integral component of the viewer’s experience of Fourteen Stations. The drawings and poem/drawings present a disquieting, introspective and respectful testimony to the atrocities of the war without demeaning those who perished or those who survived.

In 1993 Galles undertook the series of charcoal and white Conté crayon drawings based on aerial photographs of Nazi concentration camps. He spent months researching American and European document archives for the aerial reconnaissance negatives on which the drawings are based. Most source photographs were discovered among the captured war documents of the Nazi Luftwaffe.

For photos of the exhibit and more information regarding the “Fourteen Stations/Hey Yud Dalet” suite of drawings, see http://fermi.phys.ualberta.ca/~amk/galles/. High resolution copies of the photos are available by email upon request to Soka University, Aliso Viejo, (949) 480-4081.

The Founders Gallery’s Opening Reception for “Fourteen Stations /Hey Yud Dalet” and all related cultural events are free and open to the public. During exhibitions the Gallery is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Docent-led group tours can be arranged at alternative hours.

Directions to Soka University of America, 1 University Drive, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656: take Interstate 5 to Osso Parkway, turn west, (Oso becomes Pacific Park), and continue to Wood Canyon Drive. Turn left onto Wood Canyon Drive for 1 mile, turn right onto University Drive. Founders Hall is the large domed building in front. Parking lot (free) is to your left. For information call 949 480-4081, or visit http://www.soka.edu.

Related Exhibition Events

Thursday, February 23, 2006     Artist Lecture/Slide Presentation by Arie Galles, 7:00 pm

Thursday, March 9, 2006    Poetry Reading and Performance by Jerome Rothenberg, 7:00 pm

Sunday, March 12, 2006    Film Screening Fourteen Stations, Discussion with Director Howard Libov, 5:00 pm

Thursday, March 23, 2006 Symposium: Thoughts, Words and Images: Portrayals of Holocaust and Genocide. Moderated by Prof. Stephen Feinstein, University of Minnesota, 7:00pm

Friday, April 7, 2006    Concert – Premiere of New Music by Prof. Michael Golden, Soka University, 8:00 pm

Arie A. Galles: Biographical Notes

Arie A. Galles was born in 1944 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, grew up in Poland and Israel before coming to the US. He studied in Rome, Italy, in 1966-7. He received a BFA in 1968 from the Tyler School of Fine Arts of Temple University, Philadelphia, and an MFA from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He taught at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, School of Visual Arts, NYC, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, University of California at San Diego, and Fairleigh Dickinson University, Madison, NJ before coming to Soka in 2005. Currently Galles is Professor of Art and Director of the Creative Arts Program at Soka University of America in Aliso Viejo, CA. He is working on a book, “Drawing with Ashes,” based upon his journal entries through the 10 years it took him to complete the "Fourteen Stations/Hey Yud Dalet" suite of drawings. Galles' drawings and “Reflected Light Paintings” have been exhibited nationally, including solo shows at the O.K. Harris Gallery, NYC, and the Zolla Lieberman Gallery, Chicago. His works are in public and private collections in the US and abroad.

Jerome Rothenberg: Biographical Notes

Jerome Rothenberg is the author of over seventy books of poetry. He edited seven major assemblages of traditional and contemporary poetry including Technicians of the Sacred, Shaking the Pumpkin, A Big Jewish Book and Poems for the Millennium. He has also been involved with various aspects of poetry performance, including two radio sound plays written and performed for Westdeuttscher Rundfunk. A theatrical version of his book, Poland/1931, by Hanon Reznikov and the Living Theater, was presented on the New York stage in 1988, and Khurbn was produced by the Bread & Puppet Theater in 1995. Rothenberg is the winner of two PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Literary Awards for The Lorca Variations and Poems for the Millennium . He has also won the PEN Center USA West Translation Award for PPPPPP. In 2001 he was elected to the Academy of World Poetry. He was until recently a professor of visual arts and literature at the University of California, San Diego.

"Fourteen Stations / Hey Yud Dalet" suite has been exhibited at the following venues:

2004/5        Florida Holocaust Museum, St. Petersburg, FL

2003        Schmidt Gallery, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL

2002        Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ

1999        Rockefeller Arts Center Gallery, State University College, Fredonia, NY     “In-Progress”

1999        Katherine Nash Gallery, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN     “In-Progress”

1999        Holocaust Museum & Learning Center, St. Louis, MO             “In-Progress”

1998        Tyler Gallery, SUNY at Oswego, Oswego, NY                 “In-Progress”

1998        Freyberger Gallery, Penn State University, Reading, PA             “In-Progress”

1996        Bergen Museum of Art and Science, Paramus, NJ             “In-Progress”

The “Fourteen Stations/Hey Yud Dalet” suite debuted at the Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ, in August 2002. The exhibition catalogue features an essay by noted Art Historian and Cultural Theorist, Andrea Liss, Professor in the Visual and Performing Arts Program at the California State University, San Marco, CA and essays by prominent Holocaust scholars, Stephen C. Feinstein, Director of the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and John K. Roth, Edward J. Sexton Professor of Philosophy and Director, Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights, Claremont McKenna College, Claremont, CA.

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