Marywood University Art Galleries to Present Virtual Holocaust and Genocide Exhibition


SCRANTON, PA (January 20, 2016)—Marywood University to present an exhibition titled, TEREZIN and KURDISTAN—A Journey, which will open on Saturday, January 30, 2016, in the Suraci Gallery, on the second floor of the Shields Center for Visual Arts. The exhibition is the inaugural presentation of the virtual Holocaust and Genocide Studies Center at Marywood University. The exhibition is free and open to the public.


A journey through photographs by Michael Mirabito, professor and chairperson of the communication arts program at Marywood University, paints a view of Terezin (Theresienstadt)) in the Czech Republic and various places in Kurdistan, sites of recent and past genocides. The photographs capture haunting images of implied former devastation and atrocities, as well as portray the human need for normalcy. Yet, the line between normalcy and violence can be a thin one, and, in some regions, genocide has become the new normal.


In 2014, Dr. Mirabito, along with a colleague, taught photography and video workshops in Kurdistan. They also visited a prison-headquarters, which was operational during Saddam Hussein’s regime, along with genocide memorial sites. Terezin, in turn, is a Holocaust site approximately 60 km. from Prague, which Dr. Mirabito subsequently visited.


An additional five drawings, created and concealed by Terezin’s prisoners, are suspended from the gallery’s ceiling. These drawing were provided by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. On the reverse sides of the drawings are fields of names, those of Holocaust victims written on a synagogue’s walls in Prague.


Other photographs in the exhibition depict the infamous entrance sign to Auschwitz and two sites in Nuremberg, Germany. A number of Terezin’s prisoners were ultimately transported to and murdered in the Auschwitz camp complex. Nuremberg was a site of Nazi rallies and a place where individuals, charged with war crimes against humanity, were tried.


The exhibition concludes with photographs that captured, at the time when taken, everyday life in Kurdistan and Prague. People married, festivals were held, and patrons visited their favorite teahouses. The images were and are part of the circle of life; reminders that normalcy, and the opportunity to simply live one’s life, may return to the region.


TEREZIN and KURDISTAN – A Journey is the inaugural presentation of Marywood University’s Holocaust and Genocide Studies Center. Designed as virtual construct, the Center will serve as an educational force, primarily reaching high school and college age audiences. How do we break this chain of inhumanity? The Center, directed by Michael Mirabito, Ph.D., will work to answer such questions.


TEREZIN and KURDISTAN – A Journey will be on exhibit in the Suraci Gallery through February 28, 2016. A gallery talk, given by Dr. Mirabito, will take place on Wednesday, February 17, 2016, at 2 p.m. in the Suraci Gallery. This event is free and open to the public.


The Suraci Gallery is located on the second floor in the Shields Center for Visual Arts. All events at the Suraci Gallery are free and open to the public. Suraci Gallery hours are Monday, Thursday, and Friday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday, from 9 a.m. – 8 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, from 1 – 4 p.m. For additional information or directions, contact Marywood University Art Galleries, at (570) 348-6211, ext. 2428, friend us on Facebook, or visit