Speakers Explore the Holocaust Through Art at JGallery Opening Reception
Artists Veronique Jonas and Julie Meetal told JGallery guests how they met and discovered they were both painting to capture feelings of horror, loss and hope for a better future. Photoscredit: Andrew Holmes
By Joanne Pelc and Barbara Waisman
A crowd of 120 people attended the JGallery's opening reception April 3 for "The Color of Memory: Art by Two Daughters of the Holocaust," an exhibit by two accomplished Dallas artists, Veronique Jonas and Julie Meetal. JGallery guests were riveted as the speakers discussed how they met and discovered they were both painting with the same mission - to capture feelings of horror, loss and hope for a better future.
Even those knowledgeable about the Holocaust found themselves amazed by Jonas' largely untold story of the 1,700 person Jewish community deported from the Greek island of Rhodes by the Nazis in the last years of the war. Her paintings remind us what life was once like there - and now all that remains is a natural beauty and the phantoms of a community and family lost.
Meetal described how some of her paintings seemed to paint themselves and how the process of creation helped her emotionally cope at age 40 when she heard her parents' complete stories for the first time. Her powerful, chronologically hung artwork symbolically displays her parents' struggles in Hungary and how they overcame evil to survive.
Although stylistically quite different, these artists combined their art to educate people of all ages how hate destroys the lives of real families and real people. The exhibit gives a voice to all of those who perished and to all who survived -- to never forget.
"The Color of Memory" will remain in the JGallery through May 22 and is accompanied by excellent explanations for those who missed the reception.
The gallery’s next art reception will take place Wednesday, June 5, at 7 p.m. The show, “En Plein Air: The Art of Painting Outdoors,” will be on display from May 29 through July 15. ■