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Symposium on ‘War, Trauma and Art’

26 April, 2022 @ 1:30 pm 5:00 pm

In conjunction with our exhibition ‘Art after Auschwitz’, featuring the work of Boris Lurie and Wolf Vostell, and the launch of the accompanying publication ‘Boris Lurie and Wolf Vostell | Art after the Shoah’ Kunstmuseum Den Haag is to host a symposium on ‘War, Trauma and Art’ on Tuesday 26 April. The keynote speakers will be art historian Eckhart Gillen and author Arnon Grunberg. 

From the late 1950s onwards artists Boris Lurie and Wolf Vostell confronted their audiences with the horrors of the Shoah (the Hebrew word for the Holocaust), at a time when many people found it too difficult to talk about the war. Their view that art was not about beauty, but about showing grim reality, was entirely at odds with the spirit of the time.

The war in Ukraine has made the question of how society should deal with atrocities, war crimes and victims even more relevant. Every day we see countless pictures of the terrible situation there, and yet daily life seems to go on as normal.  

At the symposium art historians Eckhart Gillen and Daniel Koep will discuss the work of Boris Lurie and Wolf Vostell and their impact on the art world after the Second World War. We will also draw parallels with today’s world, discussing with contemporary artists, writers and academics the visualisation of war crimes, trauma and injustice, with reference to their own work and to the recent situation in Eastern Europe. 

Kunstmuseum Den Haag, The Hague

Stadhouderslaan 41
Den Haag, South Holland 2517 HV Netherlands
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