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HKHTC-HKU-Yad Vashem Art in the Holocaust Exhibition: Now until Dec 20 (Mon-Sat 09:00-21:00)

2023-11-24T16:56:15+08:00Tags: |


Join us in commemorating the 85th anniversary of Kristallnacht through the exhibition Art in the Holocaust. This HKHTC-HKU exhibition, in collaboration with Yad Vashem, provides a glimpse into art created during the Holocaust in ghettos, camps, forests and while in hiding.

The artworks reflect the tension between the artists’ need to document the terrible events they endured and their desire to break free through art, and escape into the realms of beauty, imagination and faith. These artworks, from Yad Vashem’s Art Collection, stand as testimony to the strength of the human spirit that refuses to surrender.

This exhibition takes place between now and December 20 (Opening Hours: Mon-Sat 09:00-21:00) at the HKU Centennial Campus:

5/F, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, The University of Hong Kong

Free admission. All are welcome.
For further information, please contact smlc@hku.hk

This special project is organized along with the University of Hong Kong and in cooperation with Yad Vashem.


Screening the Holocaust: HKHTC-supported Holocaust Films @ HK Jewish Film Festival 2023

2023-11-24T16:51:37+08:00Tags: |

The Hong Kong Holocaust & Tolerance Centre was pleased to support a number of Holocaust-themed films as part of the 24th Hong Kong Jewish Film Festival taking place 11-19 November 2023.

These public screenings took place in person at the Golden Scene Cinema at 2 Catchick St, Kennedy Town. Please see the list below for film descriptions.

Supported Films 2023

The Return of the Violin (Sunday, 12 November, 12:00pm)

A young Jewish boy [Bronislaw Huberman] from Czestochowa, Poland, plays the violin with such virtuosity that a nobleman gifts him a 1731 Stradivarius, which he later plays in front of composer Johannes Brahms. While playing at Carnegie Hall in 1936 Huberman’s violin is stolen. Forced to flee Europe at the onset of World War II, he emigrates to Israel where he establishes the Israeli National Orchestra (the present day Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra) and rescues hundreds of Jewish musicians from Nazi Europe. In this documentary, American violinist Joshua Bell reveals the compelling story of the violin, which was only recovered in 1985.

The Conspiracy (Sunday, 12 November, 1:50pm)

This startling animated documentary addresses an insidious, centuries-old conspiracy theory that continues to rear its ugly head today: the idea that Jews have a secret international plot to control the world. Filmmaker Maxim Pozdorovkin and a host of talented voice actors including Mayim Bialik, Liev Schreiber, Jason Alexander, and Ben Shenkman connect the dots of hate and fear, walking us through almost 250 years of antisemitic ideology, and focusing on how times of uncertainty give rise to hatred and increase anxieties in marginalized populations.

Link to trailer here.

The Man in the Basement (Sunday, 12 November, 5:20pm)

After a Jewish couple in Paris sells their basement storage unit to a former history teacher (“The Intouchables’” François Cluzet), they discover his secret life as an antisemitic conspiracy theorist. As the couple struggles to rescind the sale, the buyer befriends their naive teenage daughter.

Link to trailer here.

Shadow of the Day (Tuesday, 14 November, 8:50pm)

In 1938 Italy, after the promulgation of the racial laws, fascist-abiding restaurateur Luciano believes he can still live by his own rules inside his business. Everything changes when he hires Anna, a girl with a dangerous secret. A resonance with Europe’s flirtation with modern-day facism can be felt in every scene in this mesmerizing period thriller.

Link to trailer here.

June Zero (Wednesday, 15 November, 9:00pm)

This empathetic and humanistic film looks at the infamous trial of Adolf Eichmann, the architect of the mass extermination of Jews during the Second World War. Depicting the events preceding Eichmann’s 1962 execution, Director Jake Paltrow has a unique take on the impact of the event on the Israeli society of the time. Following the perspective of the three main characters, a 13-year-old child, Eichmann’s prison guard and an investigator for the prosecution, we see a light, but gripping, way to delineate the story of this national defining event.

Link to trailer here.

Girl No. 60427 (Sunday, 19 November, 1:00pm)

Tel Aviv, 1998, summer vacation. Reut finds and reads her grandmother’s secret diary from the Holocaust. Grandma’s story resonates in Reut’s well-developed imagination, and the fun week in Tel Aviv with Grandpa and Grandma turns into something else entirely. This mixed-genre, live action/animation film is based on the childhood memories of the director, who discovered her grandmother’s Holocaust diary when she was thirteen.

Link to trailer here.

Music Under the Swastika (Sunday, 19 November, 1:00pm)

Why was classical music so important to Hitler and Goebbels? The stories of Jewish cellist Anita Lasker-Wallfisch, member of the infamous Women’s Orchestra of Auschwitz, and of star conductor Wilhelm Furtwängler, who worked with the Nazis, provide insight. Both shared a love for classical German music. Why did gifted artists like Furtwängler make a pact with evil? Why was classical music played in extermination camps? And how did this change the way victims saw music?

Link to trailer here.

Vishniac (Sunday, 19 November, 3:35pm)

Photographer Roman Vishniac is best known for traversing Eastern Europe from 1935 through 1938, on assignment for the American Joint Distribution Committee, documenting Jewish life in Eastern Europe. While the purpose of the photographs was to raise funds for impoverished Jewish communities, few could have predicted that less than a decade later these communities would be wiped out. Vishniac’s photographs provide the last visual records of an entire world. After the war he continued to add to the historical record with photographs of Berlin in ruins and children in displaced persons camps before shifting his focus to groundbreaking scientific work. The film goes behind the images and beyond the myths to portray a man who took those closest to him to the brink of rejection, yet gave the world a diverse and beautiful collection.

Link to trailer here.

Filip (Sunday, 19 November, 7:10pm)

In 1943, Filip, a Polish Jew, who managed to escape from the Warsaw ghetto, is waiting tables in the heart of Nazi Germany – while taking revenge on the Nazis in his own unique way. Alone, cosmopolitan, and incapable of deeper feelings, Filip hides his Jewish origins and often eludes death, while carelessly enjoying all the charms of a life surrounded by luxury, beautiful women and friends from all over Europe. This very sexy film is wonderfully addictive.

(Warning: Adult content)

Link to trailer here.

HKHTC Educational Event Series | Eva’s Story: A DiT Conversation with Holocaust Survivor Eva Kor

2023-10-26T18:10:22+08:00Tags: |

Eva Kor 1Through the Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre’s partnership with the USC Shoah Foundation we are bringing eye-opening AI technology to Hong Kong. This makes it possible to engage with survivor testimony in an interactive and personal way. In this academic year, students such as those form Malvern College and ESF schools can compare and contrast different survivor testimonies, conduct independent research on individual testimonies and explore the diverse backgrounds of families whose lives were destroyed in the Holocaust. We are also developing educational resources in Chinese and also have survivor testimony from the Nanjing massacre for classroom use.

Recently, HKHTC was delighted to host Dimensions in Testimony (DiT) sessions with the interactive biography of Holocaust survivor Eva Kor at Malvern College for the HKHTC Educational Event Series.

Eva Kor 2About Eva Kor
Eva Kor was 10 when she and her family stepped off the train in Auschwitz in the fall of 1944. Minutes later an SS officer took her and her twin sister, Miriam, away from their mother, father and two older sisters. The twins never saw the others again. Awaiting the girls was Josef Mengele, “the Angel of Death” who performed unspeakably sadistic experiments on roughly 1,500 sets of twins. When the Soviet army liberated Auschwitz on Jan. 27, 1945, Eva and Miriam were among the fewer than 200 survivors of Mengele’s atrocities. Kor talked about her ordeal at the hands of Mengele and her decision to forgive.

Eva Kor was one of the female Holocaust survivors to be immortalised in an interactive projection in the USC Shoah Foundation’s Dimensions in Testimony – this is in partnership in Asia with the Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre.

Eva Kor 3 Eva Kor 4 Eva Kor 5

HKHTC Statement on the Attack on the State of Israel

2023-10-09T16:23:33+08:00Tags: |

On October 7, 2023, a series of unprecedented large-scale and coordinated terrorist atrocities were perpetrated against the State of Israel. Israel finds itself in an ongoing state of war and national emergency.

Many friends and partners of the Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre (HKHTC) find themselves under deadly attack.

We at the HKHTC stand in solidarity with Israel and our friends and partners there.

We hope and pray for their safety and mourn their losses.

We extend our most heartfelt sympathies to all the bereaved families who lost loved ones to these heinous and senseless terrorist attacks.

We strongly condemn terrorism.

We stand firm in the fight against antisemitism and intolerance.

We firmly reject any pretence to deny the State of Israel the right to exist and live in peace.

We welcome all efforts to bring about a peaceful resolution to a conflict which has caused so much human suffering.

The State of Israel is home to over 147,000 direct survivors of the Shoah. Many escaped the unimaginable barbarism of the Holocaust to rebuild their lives – and families – in Israel. Reports suggest that a wheel-chair bound Holocaust survivor was among the people abducted and currently held hostage.

Yom HaShoah Commemoration 5783/2023: Remembering the 80th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

2023-04-18T08:04:44+08:00Tags: |

Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day, is observed every year. It is a day of commemoration of the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust as a result of actions carried out by Nazi Germany. This year Yom HaShoah coincides with the 80th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, this moment halfway through the Holocaust when the remnants of the Warsaw Ghetto, having seen their families and friends dragged off to be murdered in Treblinka, said no, no more, we will not die as the Germans decide even though die we surely will.

After almost three years of hunger, disease, terror and seeing the murder of the vast majority of their fellow Jews, these brave few decided to stand firm and die on their own terms. Their actions – that month when they kept the Germans at bay and fought from house to house, room to room – not only shocked Germany and its collaborators but gave hope also to those in ghettos and camps elsewhere. What started that night in April 1943 did not stop there but inspired rebellions in Treblinka, Sobibor, Auschwitz-Birkenau, and in the Częstochowa, Będzin and Białystok Ghettos too.
On 17 April 2023, HKHTC was honored to host the annual Yom HaShoah commemoration at the Jewish Community Centre — as we paid honour to the memory of these brave men and women who, with the partisans in the forests of Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus and elsewhere in Eastern Europe did not go like sheep to the slaughter and, instead, inspired those words in Zog nit keyn mol: mir zaynen do! [מיר זײַנען דאָ] – we are here!


HKHTC Educational Event Series | Pinchas’ Story: A Live Conversation with Holocaust Survivor Pinchas Gutter

2023-04-18T07:57:58+08:00Tags: |

In March 2023, HKHTC was delighted to host Poland-born Holocaust survivor Mr Pinchas Gutter, who joined us live from his home in Toronto, for the 2023 HKHTC Educational Event Series (Pinchas’ Story: A Live Conversation with Holocaust Survivor Pinchas Gutter).

Mr Pinchas Gutter

In 1942, as ten-year-old Pinchas Gutter was deported from the Warsaw Ghetto to the killing site of Maidanek and then to a series of concentration camps, he shut himself off to the terrors surrounding him and tried his best not to be noticed, to become almost invisible. But after liberation, his photographic memory would not let his past fade away, and Pinchas struggled to deal with nightmares and flashbacks.

Pinchas is the first Holocaust survivor to be immortalised in an interactive projection in the USC Shoah Foundation’s Dimensions in Testimony – this is in partnership in Asia with the Hong Kong Holocaust & Tolerance Centre.

UN Holocaust Memorial Day Commemoration 2023

2023-01-27T16:40:39+08:00Tags: |

The Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre, together with the Asia Society Hong Kong Center, was pleased to host the annual United Nations Holocaust Memorial Day Commemoration 2023.

Poland-born Holocaust survivor Mr Pinchas Gutter was the keynote speaker. In 1942, as ten-year-old Pinchas was deported from the Warsaw Ghetto to the killing site of Maidanek and then to a series of concentration camps, he shut himself off to the terrors surrounding him and tried his best not to be noticed, to become almost invisible. But after liberation, his photographic memory would not let his past fade away, and Pinchas struggled to deal with nightmares and flashbacks.

Pinchas is the first Holocaust survivor to be immortalised in an interactive projection in the USC Shoah Foundation’s Dimensions in Testimony – this is in partnership in Asia with the Hong Kong Holocaust & Tolerance Centre.

You can watch the UNHMD 2023 commemorative event here

Remembering Nanjing: 85 Years Later | ‘A Long Road to Justice’ Webinar

2022-12-14T11:37:58+08:00Tags: , , |

A Long Road to Justice
HKHTC Webinar – Commemorating the 85th Anniversary of the Atrocities at Nanjing

December 13, 2022 8:00pm HKT

You can watch the webinar video here.

To commemorate the 85th anniversary of the Rape of Nanjing, HKHTC hosted a talk by Penguin Author Sylvia Yu Friedman on Imperial Japanese military sex slavery (“comfort women”) during World War II and modern-day slavery across Asia.

A constant stream of impoverished women and girls have been, and are being, enslaved and abused in the Asia Pacific region. Slavery is not a historical issue – it’s happening today. History is repeating itself. 

Through Sylvia’s work in journalism, she’s had rare access to survivors over the last two decades. Sylvia will share her personal journey of documenting the stories of these survivors across Asia for the next generation and to spur more people on to get involved in the fight against injustice.

About Sylvia Yu Friedman

Sylvia Yu Friedman is an award-winning filmmaker, Penguin Random House SEA author and a TV host. She is the author of A Long Road to Justice: Stories from the Frontlines in Asia; Silenced No More: Voices of Comfort Women, the only journalistic account of historical Japanese military sex slavery during WWII, and Heart and Soul: The Life Story of Pastor Augustus Chao. Sylvia was awarded the Global Top 50 Women In Sustainability Awards 2022 by The SustainabilityX® Magazine. She serves as a Member of Jury for the Asian Academy Creative Awards in the Documentary category. Currently, Sylvia is writing books and also developing various TV and film projects.


Statement on the Tragic Shootings in Colorado Springs, Colorado

2022-11-23T07:36:00+08:00Tags: |

HKHTC sends its heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of the victims of the tragic shootings at Club Q in Colorado Springs, Colorado. We condemn this horrific act of hatred and intolerance, motivated by homophobia. This senseless attack is a poignant reminder of the necessity of tolerance education. It remains critical that we further strengthen efforts to teach the importance of non-discrimination, while promoting peaceful co-existence among peoples of different backgrounds and sexual orientations.

HKHTC-USC Shoah Foundation Project Brings the Cutting-edge Dimensions in Testimony and iWitness Systems to HK Schools and Universities

2022-11-04T16:49:34+08:00Tags: |

Since 2022, HKHTC’s multi-year cooperation with the USC Shoah Foundation enables us to have the cutting-edge Dimensions in Testimony and iWitness systems in place to roll out to schools and universities in our region.

These platforms give students eye-opening interactive access to survivor testimonies from the Shoah, the Nanjing massacre and other atrocities. This year, we partnered with the University of Hong Kong (HKU), the Hong Kong International School (HKIS), Carmel School and Malvern College to pilot these new resources for different age groups. We will bring them to many other schools including several ESF schools, German Swiss International School (GSIS) and other local colleges and universities.

In the absence of in-person visits by survivors – which will remain difficult to organise in the near future – this form of experiencing eyewitness accounts is a powerful pedagogical tool. We are also adding to these events with bespoke seminars, talks by family members of Holocaust survivors living in Hong Kong (our ‘Next Generation’ project), virtual reality exhibitions and museum tours. These interactions typically involve several hundreds of students and span multiple days.

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