Artwork by Michael Smuss


The Holocaust Memorial

Resource and Education Center of Florida

April 10-May 31, 2007

The Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Florida, 851 North Maitland Avenue, Maitland is pleased to announce the opening of the exhibition Reflections of a Survivor artwork by Michael Smuss on April 10, 2007. It will remain until May 31, 2007

Michael Smuss did not begin painting until 1995, when he was in his early 60’s, but his works still vividly reflect his experiences as an underground courier, weapons smuggler, and survivor of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. His highly detailed paintings are his eyewitness accounts of scenes from the War, many of which have not been commonly recounted.

His recollections often portray disturbing detail, with commentary and sometimes-critical indictment of the society that induced mass destruction. After decades of silence during which he barely ever mentioned his experience, Smuss began to paint scenes from the darkest areas of his memory, such as “The Day God was Absent,” “Fence of Life,” and “Mutzen Up,” all recounting concentration camp life and death, all in vivid color and compelling human figures.

Born in Danzig, Poland, Michael moved with his family to Lodz, Poland, in 1938. His work reflects his fond memories of those with whom he lived and faced death there. His work — indeed, his life — is a testament to the tenacity of life and strength of spirit. Michael Smuss has chosen to be defined neither by his victim hood nor his persecution. His work shows what is forever ingrained in his heart, his belief in the survival of the human spirit and the freedom of his soul.

Reflections of a Survivor is organized and circulated by the Florida Holocaust Museum, St. Petersburg, Florida.

This program is supported through generous grants from the Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando and the Darden Restaurants Foundation. This project is also funded by the United Arts of Central Florida. Inc, State of Florida, Department of State – Division of Cultural Affairs, Florida Arts Council and National Endowment for the Arts.

Hours at the Center are Sunday 1pm to 4pm, Monday – Thursday 9am to 4pm, and Friday 9am to 1pm.

To schedule field trips for students or groups and for additional information call 407-628-0555.