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Expressionistic lithograph by Richard Grune depicting concentration camp inmates begging a guard for food

Object | Accession Number: 2002.82.1

Lithograph created by Richard Grune for a 1947 series of works based upon his experiences as an inmate in German concentration camps and prisons from 1934-1945. Grune was a Bauhaus trained artist who moved to Berlin in February 1933, as the Nazis were consolidating their control of the government. In December 1934, he was denounced and arrested. Under interrogation, Grune admitted to being homosexual. He was held in protective custody for five months, then returned to Flensburg, his childhood home, to stand trial for violating Article 6, §175 of the penal code which punished indecent acts between men. In September 1936, he was convicted and sentenced to prison. Upon his release, the Gestapo returned Grune to protective custody, asserting that his sentence had been too lenient. In October 1937, Grune was sent to Sachsenhausen concentration camp where he remained until being transferred to Flossenbürg in early April 1940. Five years later in April 1945, as American forces approached, Grune escaped during the evacuation of the camp and joined his sister in Kiel. In 1947, he published an edition of lithographs to show the world the horrific conditions of the German-run camps. It was one of the most important records of Nazi brutality published in the immediate postwar period.

Artwork Title
Begging for Food
Series Title
Passion des xx. jahrhunderts
creation:  approximately 1947
creation: Kiel (Germany)
Object Type
Lithographs (aat)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection
Record last modified: 2021-02-10 09:15:27
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