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Envisioning Evil

“The Nazi Drawings” by Mauricio Lasansky


Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 5, 1961, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite, charcoal, brush and asphaltum turpentine and red wash, on card paper, two sheets, with some torn edges, 68 1/2 x 22 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 5, 1961, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite, charcoal, brush and asphaltum turpentine and red wash, on card paper, two sheets, with some torn edges, 68 1/2 x 22 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

On exhibition

September 17 – February 19
Located on the first floor of The Baker Museum


TThe son of Jewish immigrants in Argentina, Mauricio Lasansky (1914-2012) moved to the United States in 1943. He forged a flourishing career as a printmaker and draftsman, first in New York and then from studios in Iowa and Maine. His work often explored themes of war and violence. In 1961, coinciding with the televised trial of the Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann, he began a series of monumental drawings to grapple with the Holocaust. Confronted with the atrocities, he said, “I was full of hate, poison, and I wanted to spit it out.” The self-titled series “The Nazi Drawings” is his visceral response to the horrors committed in Nazi concentration camps.

Haunting and raw, Envisioning Evil features his series of 33 monumental drawings made with pencil, turpentine and earth colors. The exhibition, over 50 years after the series’ original tour, is its first comprehensive presentation in a generation. Archival media of the Eichmann trial will also be shown.


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Selected Works

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). Triptych, 1963-71, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine, red, and white wash, with splatters of red wash, cut, torn and pasted newspaper and

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). Triptych, 1963-71, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine, red, and white wash, with splatters of red wash, cut, torn and pasted newspaper and paper, on card paper, torn at right corner, 238 4/5 x 304 1/5 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 14, 1963, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine on card paper, with some torn edges, 73 x 43 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corpora

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 14, 1963, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine on card paper, with some torn edges, 73 x 43 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 15, 1963, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine on card paper, 65 x 45 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 15, 1963, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine on card paper, 65 x 45 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 24, 1961-66, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite with erasures, brush and asphaltum terpentine and red wash, with touches of charcoal, stencil, on card paper, 43 3/8 x 39 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 24, 1961-66, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite with erasures, brush and asphaltum terpentine and red wash, with touches of charcoal, stencil, on card paper, 43 3/8 x 39 1/4 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 29, 1965-66, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine and red wash, with splatters of red wash and touches of green pastel, cut and pasted in

Mauricio Lasansky (American, b. Argentina, 1914–2012). No. 29, 1965-66, “The Nazi Drawings.” Graphite and charcoal, with erasures, brush and asphaltum turpentine and red wash, with splatters of red wash and touches of green pastel, cut and pasted intaglio print (pope’s head and miter hat), tape, biblical scripture and paper, on card paper, two sheets, with torn upper corners, 77 x 44 1/8 in. Levitt Foundation © Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky working on “The Nazi Drawings” in his studio, 1962, Vinalhaven, Maine. Photo courtesy the Lasansky Corporation.

Mauricio Lasansky working on “The Nazi Drawings” in his studio, 1962, Vinalhaven, Maine. Photo courtesy the Lasansky Corporation.


Associated Events

Lecture

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Mauricio Lasansky’s
“Nazi Drawings” in Context

October 20 at 10am

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Lecture

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Afterlives of Trauma
November 3 at 10am

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Envisioning Evil: “The Nazi Drawings” by Mauricio Lasansky is organized by the Minneapolis Institute of Art and lent by The Levitt Foundation. Generous support provided by Margaret and Angus Wurtele, Beverly Grossman, John and Ruth Huss Fund, Erwin and Miriam Kelen, John and Nancy Lindahl, Sheila Morgan, Donna and James Pohlad, through the Eloise and Carl Pohlad Family Fund, the Lynne and Andrew Redleaf Foundation, Laurie and Ronald Eibensteiner, Stephen and Sheila Lieberman, Sheldon and Lili Chester, Andrew Grossman, Irving and Marjorie Weiser, and John and Marsha Soucheray. The exhibition is curated by Rachel McGarry, Ph.D., Elizabeth MacMillan chair of European art and curator of European paintings and works on paper at the Minneapolis Institute of Art. The presentation of this exhibition at Artis—Naples, The Baker Museum, and is curated by Rangsook Yoon, Ph.D., curator of modern art.

The Artis—Naples exhibition is generously sponsored by the John and Cindy Family Foundation.

The exhibition contents and programming are presented in consultation with the Holocaust Museum & Janet G. and Harvey D. Cohen Education Center, Naples, Florida.

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