Antisemitism and racism are not the same. But they are both based on the lack of regard to the values this country was founded on: freedom, justice and equality. As a proud immigrant, I deeply believe in these values, admire the dynamic energy of this country, and hope that this unprecedented time helps speed up the process towards realizing these ideals of freedom, justice and equality for all. As an individual and as the executive director of the Fritz Ascher Society, I strive to do my part in this process.
The Fritz Ascher Society tells the stories of artists, who lived and worked in Germany, as the country abandoned its first and very fragile democracy and instead moved towards a totalitarian regime, which defined minorities who did not belong, and united the country by viciously persecuting them. The systematic brutal killing of 6 million Jews that followed is unprecedented in human history.
We look at artists who lived at that pivotal point in history. We show their work, and tell their life story. Most of these artists are still not known, because their artistic voices were suppressed by the National Socialists, and never heard after. We attempt to add their artistic voices to the story of German art, which is so much richer and more complex than the dominant storyline. As we are trying to understand what happened both on an individual and a societal level, we try to learn from that history, to get a better understanding of our present time and build a more just future.