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Henryk Ross and Photography as Resistance
"I buried my negatives in the ground in order that there should be some record of our tragedy... I was anticipating the total destruction of Polish Jewry. I wanted to leave a historical record of our martyrdom." -Henryk Ross
Henryk Rozencwaijg-Ross (1910-1991) was an official photographer for the ghetto’s Department of Statistics from 1940 to 1944. He was responsible for producing identity card photos for every resident, as well as promotional images of the ghetto’s administration and factories. Born in Warsaw, Ross worked in Lodz as a press and sports photographer before the war. His position in the ghetto afforded him access to photographic equipment and film which he used to secretly document the atrocities of Lodz. He risked his life to do so.
The Henryk Ross Lodz Ghetto Collection is a unique compilation of approximately 3,000 35 mm cellulose nitrate negatives, vintage prints, graphic art, posters, and personal ephemera. They are testimony of the potential for art to be both an act of resistance and remembrance.