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Object | Accession Number: 1995.82.34

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    Brief Narrative
    Painting created by Luba Krugman Gurdus, 1948
    Artwork Title
    Fighting Ghetto
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Luba Krugman Gurdus
    Lower right "L.GURDUS '48"
    Artist: Luba Gurdus
    Luba Krugman was born on August 1, 1914, in Bialystok, Poland, to Jewish parents, Tewja and Anna Krugman. The family settled in Warsaw. In 1930, she attended art school in Lausanne, Switzerland. The next year, she went to Berlin, Germany, to study at the Academy of Fine Arts and Reimannschule for Applied Art. Hitler came to power in Germany in 1933, and that year Luba returned to Warsaw. Luba was an editor and illustrator at Bluszek Publishing. She married Jacob Gurdus in 1935. She began working Stybel Publishing, owned by her brother-in-law Abraham Joseph Stybel. Luba and Jacob had a son, Robert Michael, born on August 24, 1938, in Warsaw.

    On September 1, 1939, Nazi Germany invaded Poland. Warsaw was occupied on the 29th. On November 23, Jews were required to wear white armbands with blue Stars of David to separate them from the general population. Schools were closed, property confiscated, and Jewish males were conscripted for forced labor. Luba and her family and all the city’s Jews were confined to a walled in ghetto in fall 1939. Food was scarce and disease was widespread. By December 1941, Luba and Bobos had gone to Brody Male near Lublin, and then to Zwierzyniec. Bobos died of diphtheria on September 12, 1942. Luba’s parents also died. Luba was interned at Majdanek concentration camp.

    The war ended in May 1945. Luba and her younger sister Mira emigrated to Palestine in 1946. Luba worked for Yedioth Publications and established a woman’s magazine, L’Ischa. She resumed her art career and created a series of drawings about her Holocaust experiences which were exhibited in Israel and, later, the United States. In 1948, she left for New York on the Marine Carp, arriving on January 7. She rejoined Stybel Publishing. She had been separated during the war from her husband Jacob, who had served in a Jewish Unit of the British Eighth Army. Luba received a doctorate in art history from New York University in 1962 and later joined the Research department of the Frick Art Library. In 1978, she published “The Death Train” an illustrated account of her experiences. Luba, 97, died on December 6, 2011.

    Physical Details

    Physical Description
    Gouache on paper; image of group of figures, one helmeted
    overall: Height: 29.760 inches (75.59 cm) | Width: 22.760 inches (57.81 cm)
    overall : paper, gouache
    Labeled: "Luba Krugman Gurdus/Fighting Ghetto (1948) (Gouache)"

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    No restrictions on access
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Administrative Notes

    The painting was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1995 by Luba Krugman Gurdus.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this artifact has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2022-07-28 18:22:49
    This page:

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