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Inna Rogatchi Donates Collection fo Her Art Photography Works to the House for Elderly in Ukraine

Posted 20/7/2015

June 2015

INNA ROGATCHI DONATES COLLECTION OF HER ART PHOTOGRAPHY WORKS TO THE HOUSE FOR ELDERLY IN UKRAINE

Inna Rogatchi has donated a collection of 24 pieces of her art photography work to the Beit Baruch home for elderly people of the Dnepropetrovsk Jewish community in Ukraine.

Beila Zak and Malvina Ruvinskaya are holding Inna Rogatchi's work on Dnepropetrovsk, Red Balcony, at the donation opening ceremony. Red Balcony features the house where Inna's husband's, Michael Rogatchi's mother Maja Reiss-Rogatchi was living after her return to her native town after more than three decades of exile in Kazakhstan

From the left: Beila Zak and Malvina Ruvinskaya are holding Inna Rogatchi's work on Dnepropetrovsk, Red Balcony, at the donation's opening ceremony. Red Balcony features the house where Inna's husband's, Michael Rogatchi's mother Maja Reiss-Rogatchi was living after her return to her native town after more than three decades of exile in Kazakhstan.

The works in this collection had been previously exhibited at the European Parliament. For the exhibition in Ukraine, Inna modified her well-known The Route series making The Family Edition of it. The Family Edition is dedicated to the families of Inna and Michael Rogatchi, Buyanover-Chigrinsky-Pinsky-Elovich and Reiss-Litowsky-Rogatchi who were living in Dnepropetrovsk in the beginning of and throughout the XX century, and to the Schneerson family of the Lubavitcher Rebbe who also were living in the same city. Moreover, both Reiss-Litowsky-Rogatchi and the Scheersons, the parents of the Rebbe, were exiled to Kazakhstan at the same time, and this important moment is featured in the Family Edition of The Route collection.

The leaderhip of the Beit Baruch home and representative of the Chief Rabbi are getting familiar with the exhibited works of Inna Rogatchi's donation at the home for the elderly in Dnepropetrovsk. June 2015       The leaderhip of the Beit Baruch home and representative of the Chief Rabbi are getting familiar with the exhibited works of Inna Rogatchi's donation at the home for the elderly in Dnepropetrovsk. June 2015

 

The leaderhip of the Beit Baruch home and representative of the Chief Rabbi are getting familiar with the exhibited works of Inna Rogatchi's donation at the home for the elderly in Dnepropetrovsk. June 2015.

Inna Rogatchi has made her donation of 24 art works in memory of her father Isaac Buyanover, who had been a well-known engineer and inventor, and also a keen and advanced photographer. The donation of The Route collection to the Beit Baruch home for the elderly has added to the previous donation by Inna and Michael Rogatchi of the outstanding Buyanover family library to the same institution in memory of Inna's mother, prolific and legendary teacher Anna Buyanover. Previously, The Rogatchi Foundation has supported the Beit Baruch home with sport and medical equipment, as well.

"I am very glad for the joint donation to this exemplary home for the elderly, which Beit Baruch in Dnepropetrovsk is, and will continue the joint memory of my parents, who were very heartfelt people always helping others during all of their far from being easy lives. I do believe that it is the best place possible for my special Family Edition of The Route, and am very glad that the memory of my parents will be living in that special place. I also am delighted to see my work in the synagogue, it means a lot to me" ,- said Inna Rogatchi.

Inna Rogatchi's art work at the Beit Baruch Synagogue and Recreaction Area, Dnepropetrovsk       Inna Rogatchi's art work at the Beit Baruch Synagogue and Recreaction Area, Dnepropetrovsk

 

Inna Rogatchi's art works at the Beit Baruch Synagogue and Recreaction Area, Dnepropetrovsk.

The inhabitants of the Beit Baruch home received the donation enthusiastically. They especially liked the works that feature places in their own city, which they were so happy to recognise and to tell their stories connected with them. They also were very glad to have artistic pictures in almost all of their home's premises.

"We are delighted that Inna and Michael Rogatchi chose our Beit Baruch home as the home for their outstanding art works. The well-known energy of the Rogatchis, their inner light is enlightening now almost all of the premises here: our synagogue, recreation space, winter garden and the passage. I am absolutely sure that their works will be bringing many positive emotions to the people who are living here, thus adding to their health and well-being", - said Malvina Ruvinskaja, Director of the Beit Baruch home for the elderly, at the opening ceremony of the exhibition of the donated works.

The art work from Inna Roagatchi's The Route. Family Edition collection at the Beit Baruch home for the elderly in Dnepropetrovsk       The art work from Inna Roagatchi's The Route. Family Edition collection at the Beit Baruch home for the elderly in Dnepropetrovsk

 

The art work from Inna Roagatchi's The Route. Family Edition collection at the Beit Baruch home for the elderly in Dnepropetrovsk.

Beila Zak, assistant to Chief Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetski, has emphasised at the ceremony: "We know that Inna's parents, Isaac and Anna Buyanover, were wonderful people and that they did very much for our city. We are very happy that their daughter is continuing the deeds of her parents and predecessors. We are really proud of such fellow countrymen as Inna and Michael Rogatchi. They are glorifying Jewish people world-wide, and thanks to them, the world is really getting better".

Inna and Michael Rogatchi and The Rogatchi Foundation express their cordial gratitude to the Chief Rabbi of the Dnepropetrovsk Shmuel Kaminetski, his assistent Beila Zak, Director of the Beit Baruch home for the elderly, Malvina Ruvinskaja, and all their colleagues who participated with such diligence and solidarity in facilitating this important donation.

 

 

June 2015

MICHAEL ROGATCHI DONATES HIS FAMED FACES OF THE HOLOCAUST TRIPTYCH TO THE JEWISH ORPHANS HOUSE IN UKRAINE

Faces of the Holocaust, the famed triptych by Michael Rogatchi, has been donated by the artist to the Beit le-Banim home for Jewish boys which functions under the auspice of the Dnepropetrovsk Jewish Community in Ukraine. Inna and Michael Rogatchi and their Foundation have been supporting the Jewish community of the place where their families are from.

Michael Rogatchi's Faces of the Holocaust triptych at its new home at the Beit le-Banim home for boys in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine

Michael Rogatchi's Faces of the Holocaust triptych at its new home at the Beit le-Banim home for boys in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine.

"There cannot be a better place for this work which is dedicated to the memory of my family of Reiss-Litowsky-Rogatchi who had been living here in the beginning of the XXth century", - said the artist. Several members of Michael's family were murdered by the Nazis in Dnepropetrovsk during the Holocaust, and the work is highly symbolic for the artist as a family dedication, and also as related to the place of Ukraine where the Shoah hit his family the hardest.

"I quite realise that the triptych is challenging for children of a young age, but there are boys of different ages who are living and are taken care of at the House, and also, most importantly, we are looking to raise up men, in the best meaning of the word, so I do hope that the work would be a good reminder to many of them, my good little friends there, on how a man should take the challenges in life, and how any person should remember and understand the history, especially the history of his own people" - said Michael.

Michael Rogatchi's Faces of the Holocaust triptych at its new home at the Beit le-Banim home for boys in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine

Michael Rogatchi's Faces of the Holocaust triptych at its new home at the Beit le-Banim home for boys in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine.

The triptych Faces of the Holocaust, which is a part of the artist's important In the Mirror of Shoah collection, has been exhibited all over the world including Israel, Poland, Finland, the Baltic states, Italy, and the UK. The image of the triptych has been reproduced in many important publications on the Holocaust world-wide.

Michael Rogatchi and The Rogatchi Foundation express their deep gratitude to the Chief Rabbi of Dnepropetrovsk Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetski, Rabbi Yossi and Rebbetzin Sarah GlicksBeila Zak, and all the other activists of the Dnepropetrovsk Jewish community for their cordial help in facilitating for the artist and his family this important donation.

 

June 2015

The US Premiere of Inna Rogatchi's The Lessons of Survival Film in Chicago

In June 2015, Inna Rogatchi's The Lessons of Survival film has been chosen as the closing show of the Faces of Humanity Special Film Series, a co-project of the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Educational Centre and the Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema.

Inna Rogatchi has been invited as a Special Guest and Speaker at the event.

The event was attended by the leaderships of both co-organising institutions, the leadership of the MidWest office of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, internationally leading Rabbis, educators and cultural figures.

In her Opening Remarks, Lillian Polus Gerstner, Director of the Special Programs for the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Centre, has emphasised a special note for their institution which "has become a platform for the US premiere of an internationally acclaimed documentary". Lillian Gerstner attested to the film as a "very fine and very special work by Inna Rogatchi who has created a unique documentary based on her personal relationships with Simon Wiesenthal. In this film, we can see the legendary Nazi-hunter from a very close range, and we can see and feel his personality really closely. This makes the film unique, especially since Wiesenthal's passing away ten years ago, and even before that, there has not been a film on him and with him done from such a unique perspective".

Lillian Polus Gerstner of the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Centre and her Opening and Introductory Remarks. Chicago, June 2015       Cindy Stern of the Chicago Film Festival of Israeli Cinema in her Opening and Introductory Remarks. Chicago, June 2015

 

Lillian Polus Gerstner, left, of the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Centre, and Cindy Stern, of the Chicago Film Festival of Israeli Cinema in their Opening and Introductory Remarks. Chicago, June 2015. 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation

Cindy Stern, Director of the Chicago Festival of the Israeli Cinema, in her Introductory Speech, has made the following comparison:

"Dr. Inna Rogatchi shares much in common with the subject of Lessons of Survival, Simon Wiesenthal. Both were born in what is now Ukraine. Both earned scientific degrees and have had multiple careers. Both are global citizens and activists. Both have made their marks as noted authors and speakers. And both have demonstrated a love of the Jewish people, preserving our heritage and making the world a better place". In her introduction of Inna Rogatchi, Cindy Stern was very generous: "After spending time with Inna this week, I must add to all her titles and capacities she is working in; the title 'Superwoman.'

At the occasion of the US premiere of her film, Inna Rogatchi has been awarded by the Chicago Film Festival of Israeli Cinema and the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Centre a special Diploma "Honouring Dr Inna Rogatchi for her artistic, academic, governmental, societal and personal contributions to the Jewish people, Holocaust education, and Israel".

Inna Rogatchi receiving a Special Diploma from Cindy Stern. Chicago, June 2015       Inna Rogatchi addressing the public. Chicago, June 2015

 

On the left: Inna Rogatchi receiving a Special Diploma from Cindy Stern
On the right: Inna Rogatchi addressing the public. Chicago, June 2015. 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation

Inna Rogatchi addressed the public with the introduction to her film, and also with a Special Lecture after the film's screening.

In her address, the author of the film emphasised the role of the first-hand witness of the Holocaust: "As far as I understand, the most terrible tragedy in modern history, there is not one Holocaust, and not even 6 million Holocausts. To me, there are 9,5 million personal Holocausts of the European pre-Second World War Jewry, and there are 14,2 million Holocausts of the Jewish people world-wide today, many of whom are children, grand-children, and great-grandchildren of the generation affected by the Holocaust directly. All of us, the successors of the Holocaust victims, have been affected by that devastating trauma.

The effect of the traumas inflicted by the Holocaust has been highly personal and unique in its manifestation and effect. Every human being matters, every life, every soul counts - such a perception is based on Jewish ethics. That's why, I do believe that every single story of Holocaust survivors and their families, everything what we can collect, shall be recorded. This is the historical legacy of mankind.

This was my approach when making the documentary on Simon Wiesenthal, a very special man in modern Jewish history, and I believe, in Jewish history in general, too. I deliberately wanted to talk with Simon Wiesenthal in a way, as if the camera was not there, and to film him from a close range. And I am ever so very grateful to that great man, who I and my husband were very privileged to be good friends with, for his generous trust and simplicity with which he did share his life experience with me".

Inna Rogatchi and Cindy Stern at the US premiere of The Lessons of Survival film. Chicago, 2015

Inna Rogatchi and Cindy Stern at the US premiere of The Lessons of Survival film. Chicago, 2015. 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation

Commemorating the US premiere of the film, Inna Rogatchi has been invited to deliver a Special Lecture at the occasion of the premiere.

Inna Rogatchi presenting her Special Lecture at the US premiere of her film in Chicago. June 2015       Inna Rogatchi presenting her Special Lecture at the US premiere of her film in Chicago. June 2015

 

Inna Rogatchi presenting her Special Lecture at the US premiere of her film in Chicago. June 2015. 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation

The lecture "The Lessons of Survival - the Lessons of Courage and Humanity" was created by Inna Rogatchi on the basis of her film and Simon Wiesenthal's life, for a wider outreach in the modern time. Fifteen lessons that have been extracted by the author to model our approach and attitude at the challenging situations of today. "Clearly, those situations and challenges are not remotely close to those inhuman torments that occurred to Holocaust victims. But in some of them, there are factors which have attributes similiar to the Holocaust, as well. That's why, to learn from the heroic people who overcame the Holocaust, is a true moral treasure and a great help and support for all of us today", - explained Inna Rogatchi.

After a very successful lecture, Inna Rogatchi proposed to write a special book based on her Lessons of Courage and Humanity, with illustrations by the works of her husband, renowned artist Michael Rogatchi, and herself.

Inna Rogatchi answers questions from the public during the Q&A session after her film's screening in Chicago. June 2015       Inna Rogatchi answers questions from the public during the Q&A session after her film's screening in Chicago. June 2015

 

Inna Rogatchi answers questions from the public during the Q&A session after her film's screening in Chicago. June 2015. 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation

At the Q&A session following the Special Lecture, there were many questions from a deeply interested and involved public, and those questions varied from the days and figure of Simon Wiesenthal to many present-day phenomena which are very real for the US and world Jewry. Several questions in particular were devoted to Holocaust education, which is still felt to be inadequate by many practising educators, in particular, in the USA. "Apart from Jewish schools where the Holocaust is taught very thoroughly, the rest of our educational system still lacks the proper level of Holocaust education. Even when it is in the school's curriculum, which is not the case in general in the USA, this is a non-sponsored part of the curriculum, meaning that it is often shallow and simply inadequate" - pointed out by Chicago educators during the vivid public discussion.

Inna Rogatchi was also asked if she has a vision of how to prevent the racial hatred which seems to be gaining its peak again today. "I do, and for many years am trying to make it happen. I am advocating for making a trip to one of the Nazi death camps to be mandatory in every curriculum at every school in every country world-wide. Only when a teenager, or a young person of 15-16-17 years old sees the camps with their own eyes will they learn first-hand and on the spot, what has happened there not that long ago, only then will a youth get his or her anti-racism 'vaccination'. I am absolutely positive in this view, and am trying hard to be heard on it in practical terms on the international level", - concluded Inna Rogatchi.

Director for Development, Aish Ha Torah, Rabbi Yonah Yaffe, Inna Rogatchi and philanthropist Rivkie Muskat at the US premiere of the Inna Rogatchi's film. Chicago, 2015

From the left: Director for Development, Aish Ha Torah, Rabbi Yonah Yaffe, Inna Rogatchi and philanthropist Rivkie Muskat at the US premiere of Inna Rogatchi's film. Chicago, 2015. 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation

The film has been received very warmly by the Chicago audience. Alison Pure-Slovin, Director of the MidWest office of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre attested to the film as "excellent", while Lillian Polus Gerstner, Director for Special Programs at the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Centre has concluded in her Closing Remarks that "the role of the documentarist is to provoke thoughts. It is quite obvious that Inna Rogatchi has carried her role as documentarist to the highest and very productive level. We all will be thinking about what we have seen in her film, for many days and months ahead. Thank you for that, dear Inna!".

From the left: Lillian Polus Gerstner, Director for Special Projects, Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Centre; Inna Rogatchi, and Cindy Stern, Director of the Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema, at the ceremony in Chicago. June 2015 
© Courtesy: The Rogatchi Foundation.

After the US premiere of The Lessons of Survival in Chicago, the film is planned for further screenings and special events in Washington DC, New York, Boston and other parts and places of the USA.

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