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The Old Town of Vilnius. 24 sanguine drawings

Author: Mečislovas Bulaka (1907–1994)
Created:1958
Dimensions:0 cm

Vilnius Old Town. 24 sanguine drawings. 1958

Mečislovas Bulaka (19071994) arrived in Vilnius from Kaunas in 1940, and after the war, for a short while worked as the head and a lecturer of the Vilnius Art Institute. He was fascinated with the Old Town, but did not represent its famous monuments. Bulaka made drawings of the Vilnius Ghetto immediately after its liquidation in September 1943: crumbling crooked buildings, dug out earth, heaps of bricks in bleak courtyards, lifeless streets. In postwar years he captured the ruins of the Great Synagogue. Bulaka’s album Vilnius Old Town. 24 sanguine drawings published in 1958 was adapted to suit Soviet and antisemitic ideology. In the foreword to the album, the historian Juozas Jurginis explained that the drawings depicted “the hellholes of working people” exploited by feudalists and capitalists, without mentioning that it was the Jewish Ghetto.

Text author Laima Laučkaitė