Category Archives: bio

Full of Life … Escape from Transport XX


① memo 20180419 ~ Full of Life … Escape from Transport XX ~ Today 75 years ago , that night of April 19th, 1943 in Belgium , Elias Gnazik helped jump the pregnant Isabella Weinreb from the fast moving 20th train heading for Auschwitz. Viviane – meaning ‘full of life’ – was born 6 months later.
Discussion – moderated by Ingrid Vander Veken – of Simone Korkus’ dutch book “Het dienstmeisje van Degrelle” on 15 oktober 2017 in Kazerne Dossin , Mechelen , Belgium.
This new short film (with english captions / partly english spoken) highlights our discussion in that ‘Literary Cafe’ on Oct. 15, 2017 in Kazerne Dossin, of Elias’ rescue of Isabella and Vivian ; it continues with our visit later to the Kazerne Dossin portrait wall (portrait’s of deported people) with Simone Korkus and Jan Maes (the first to point Simone to Hannah’s story) ; and ends with me having a short improvised talk in english with a visitor’s couple .
Film ① memo 20180419 ~ Full of Life ~ Michel van der Burg | michelvanderburg.com | 1-memo.com | miracles.media

Isabella Weinreb Castegnier was three-months pregnant that night – 75 years ago – on April 19th, 1943 in Belgium – when she froze the moment she had to jump from the fast moving 20th train heading for Auschwitz ( Transport XX to Auschwitz ). The man waiting in line behind her , did not hesitate for a moment , and embracing her from behind , pushed her out – jumping together they both landed in a ditch.

Isabella escaped with a broken wrist and bruises all over her body, but otherwise without major injuries. Her daughter Viviane – meaning “full of life”, and named so for her will to live and hold tight in her mother’s womb – was born six months later on October 30, 1943.

That man saving Isabella and Viviane was Elias Gnazik – we discovered recently in a joint effort – when Simone Korkus had almost finished her book about the life of Elias’ daughter Hannah Gnazik , and contacted me to find out who that woman was that Elias Gnazik helped jump and escape from that cattle car of Transport XX to Auschwitz. For Simone it was a great honor to bring Hannah and Viviane together – the child of the rescuer , and the child of the rescued pregnant woman.
This new story became the epilogue in Simone’s book , written in dutch , called ‘Het Dienstmeisje Van Degrelle’.
During the discussion at the presentation of Simone’s newest book – interviewed by Ingrid Vander Veken – in the Kazerne Dossin museum I asked Simone to tell us something about this spectacular story of the probably youngest that escaped that death train.

Background

Simone Korkus (author , reporter) contacted me via facebook messenger May 2016 asking for information about Mrs Lilly (Wolkenfeld) Schwartz , and telling me Mrs Schwartz had escaped from Transport XX from the same car as Elias Gnazik , the father of Hannah (Gnazik) Nadel.
Simone had actually finished the writing of the story of Hannah (Gnazik) Nadel for her new dutch book “Het dienstmeisje van Degrelle.” but felt she would like to get to know more about Hannah’s father Elias activities in the war.
Mrs Lilly (Wolkenfeld) Schwartz had helped me and Richard from 2011 with our documentary Transport XX to Auschwitz (published 2012, a film by Karen Lynne & Richard Bloom and Michel van der Burg). Mrs Schwartz, unfortunately, had passed away in 2014 .
However , I could help Simone with the story of Mrs Schwartz’s friend Isabella – who had escaped too , right after Mrs Schwartz’s jumped from that car – while being pregnant – with a baby born 6 months after that escape, and named Viviane , meaning ‘full of life’ !
That miraculous story I had first worked on and published together with Viviane in 2014.
Further research by Simone , with the help of Viviane and the researchers of Kazerne Dossin, let Simone to the insight that Isabella had been that pregnant woman Elias Gnazik had helped jumping , and he thus , too had saved Viviane’s life !
Simone Korkus details this beautiful finding and miraculous story in a final chapter – the Epilogue – of her new book , the research , findings , conclusion and her witnessing the emotional meeting of the daughters of the rescuer and rescued in Ramat Gan , Israel.

Sources / links

Viviane Castegnier Yarom & Michel van der Burg (2014) Escape from Transport XX – to be born 6 months later – Viviane’s story.
Michel van der Burg online publication (michelvanderburg.com) link https://wp.me/p14gqN-nq

Simone Korkus (2017) “Het dienstmeisje van Degrelle. Hoe Hannah Nadel de oorlog overleefde” Paperback ISBN 978-94-6310-093-9 / E-book ISBN 978-94-6310-300-8
Polis publisher – fragment online – https://issuu.com/uitgeverijpolis/docs/preview_het_dienstmeisje_van_degrel

Book presentation – On Oct. 15th , 2017 , Simone Korkus presented her book in Kazerne Dossin , in a ‘Literary Cafe’ conversation with colleague author Ingrid Vander Veken. I published a full video report of that conversation Nov 4, 2017 . All in dutch. Het Dienstmeisje Van Degrelle – Presentatie – link https://wp.me/p14gqN-nhp

Documentary film “Transport XX to Auschwitz” (2012) A film by Karen Lynne & Richard Bloom and Michel van der Burg https://wp.me/p14gqN-hA

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Souvenir Simon

① memo 20160511 ~ Souvenir Simon ~ Richard Bloom writing for Simon Gronowski a souvenir on the flyer of our film documentary « Transport XX to Auschwitz » in Kazerne Dossin , Mechelen, Belgium – May 11, 2014.
I finally saw Karen and Richard Bloom in the flesh in Amsterdam , May 10, 2014 – after years of working together ‘in the cloud’ from opposite sides of the ocean on our film documentary « Transport XX to Auschwitz » . Next day, May 11, we drove together from Amsterdam to Mechelen ,  to meet up with Simon Gronowski and friends in the Kazerne Dossin in Mechelen , Belgium.

Film Filmer Transport XX

① memo 20160228 #2 ~ Film Filmer Transport XX ~ A second version now of the film posted earlier today.
This #2 version has the image stabilised (using editing software Final Cut X) and to optimise the stabilisation results the video is shortened also.
This video was made while I was filming in one long take one row of the portraits of the TRANSPORT XX installation in Brussels, on February 28, 2009.
The short film I made then, and info on the TRANSPORT XX installation in Brussels , is available via this link on my web site.

Film Filmer Transport XX

① memo 20160228 ~ Film Filmer Transport XX ~ I was not aware that day of this video being made of me while filming in one long take one row of the portraits of the TRANSPORT XX installation in Brussels, on February 28, 2009.
The short film I made then, and info on the TRANSPORT XX installation in Brussels , is available in this post on my web site.

tin can pinhole photography

HOLLAND. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. Taking a pinhole photo of the Erasmus bridge, using a pinhole in a tin can loaded with photographic paper. Darkroom work was done in the SKVR BeeldFabriek – that also supplied the custom made tin can pinhole cameras.
Using a 2nd camera the process was captured for the 1 minute film “tin can pinhole photo”, with original sound and added music called ‘Sonatina Piccola’ (Jan Masséus, composer) performed by the nearby playing Nederlands Jeugd Accordeon Orkest directed by Marc Belder – during this ’24 uur cultuur’ Rotterdam event.

Credits
SKVR BeeldFabriek – Tin can pinhole camera and darkroom
Nederlands Jeugd Accordeon Orkest directed by Marc Belder – Sonatina Piccola (Jan Masséus)
24 uur cultuur Rotterdam
Erasmus Bridge (Erasmusbrug) on the river ‘Nieuwe Maas’ designed by Ben van Berkel
Film and pinhole photography : Michel van der Burg (michelvanderburg.com)

Holland. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. Tin can pinhole camera © michelvanderburg.com

Holland. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. Tin can pinhole camera © michelvanderburg.com

Holland. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. Darkroom pinhole photography © michelvanderburg.com

Holland. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. SKVR BeeldFabriek – darkroom pinhole photo work © michelvanderburg.com

Holland. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. Erasmus bridge pinhole photo © michelvanderburg.com

Holland. Rotterdam. September 11, 2011. Erasmus bridge pinhole photo © michelvanderburg.com

TRANSPORT XX – installation Brussels

video framework

Storyboard of the video TRANSPORT XX — installation Brussels

TRANSPORT XX — installation Brussels
Portraits of Jews deported to Auschwitz in 1943

English text below – Français au bas

TRANSPORT XX — installatie Brussel

Video impressie (28 februari 2009) van de confrontatie van voorbijgangers met de TRANSPORT XX installatie in Brussel: 1200 fotografische portretten van joden gedeporteerd van Mechelen (België) naar Auschwitz in 1943.

Vandaag precies 66 jaar geleden — op 19 april 1943 — deporteerde het TRANSPORT XX treinkonvooi 1631 joodse gevangenen van de Kazerne Dossin in Mechelen (België) naar Auschwitz-Birkenau (Polen).
Een op de zeven van de gedeporteerden wist te ontsnappen; ondermeer door de verzetsactie van de drie Brusselse jongemannen — Youra Livschitz, Jean Franklemon and Robert Maistriau — die het konvooi ‘s nachts tot staan brachten na Boortmeerbeek — niet ver van Mechelen.
Het project TRANSPORT XX is een constructie waarin de portretten getoond worden van 1200 van de 1631 gevangenen van dit 20ste konvooi.

De TRANSPORT XX installatie in Brussel werd van 27 januari tot 15 maart 2009 georganiseerd door het BELvue Museum in samenwerking met JMDV – Kazerne Dossin (Meer info hieronder).
De fotografische portretten werden buiten gepresenteerd langs het “Park van Brussel” (Warandepark) tegenover het Koninklijk Paleis. Op deze wijze werden voorbijgangers geconfronteerd met de 1200 gezichten van de slachtoffers.
Met deze gebeurtenis werd tevens de bevrijding herdacht van Auschwitz-Birkenau op 27 januari 1945.

Meer info:

Dit project werd voor het eerst gepresenteerd aan de internationale pers op vrijdag 20 april 2007 bij de Kazerne Dossin / Joods Museum van Deportatie en Verzet (JMDV).

De Kazerne Dossin digitaliseerde de foto’s van Dossin gevangenen, die meestal afkomstig zijn uit het Belgische Algemeen Rijksarchief – Dossiers Vreemdelingen Politie.
Met het project “Geef ze een gezicht” tracht Kazerne Dossin om zoveel mogelijk portretten van gedeporteerden samen te brengen, om hen hun gezicht terug te geven, en de herinnering levend te houden.
Video © 2009 Michel van der Burg (michelvanderburg.com) — Sommige rechten voorbehouden: Creative Commons licentie: Naamsvermelding-Gelijk delen 3.0

English

TRANSPORT XX — installation Brussels

Video impression (February 28th, 2009) of the confrontation of passers-by with the TRANSPORT XX installation in Brussels, that presented 1200 photographic portraits of Jews deported from Malines (Belgium) to Auschwitz in 1943.

Today exactly 66 years ago — on 19 April 1943 — the TRANSPORT XX train convoy deported 1,631 prisoners (mainly Jews) from the Dossin Barracks in Malines (Belgium) to Auschwitz-Birkenau (Poland).
One out of seven of these deportees managed to escape, among others by the act of resistance of the three young men — Youra Livschitz, Jean Franklemon and Robert Maistriau — who stopped the convoy that night after Boortmeerbeek (near Malines).
The project TRANSPORT XX is a construction depicting the portraits of 1,200 of the 1,631 prisoners deported on this 20th convoy.

The TRANSPORT XX installation in Brussels was organised from 27 January to 15 March 2009 by the BELvue Museum in collaboration with the JMDR / Dossin Barracks (Kazerne Dossin – more info below).
The photographic portraits were displayed outside in the Royal park in Brussels (opposite the Royal Palace). In this way passers-by were confronted with 1,200 faces of the victims.
This event commemorated the release of Auschwitz-Birkenau (Poland) on 27 January 1945.

More info:

This project was first presented to the international press on Friday 20 April 2007 at the Dossin Barracks / Jewish Museum of Deportation and Resistance (JMDR) / Kazerne Dossin.
The Kazerne Dossin digitalized the photo’s of the Dossin prisoners, that mostly are from the “National State Archives of Belgium. Ministry of Justice, Public Safety Office, Foreigner’s Police, individual files“.
With the ‘Give Them a Face’ project the Kazerne Dossin aims to bring together as many portraits of deportees from the Dossin barracks in Mechelen as possible and give them back their face – and the memory alive.
Video © 2009 Michel van der Burg (michelvanderburg.com) — Some Rights Reserved Creative Commons license: Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

Français (French)

TRANSPORT XX — installation Bruxelles

Une vidéo de l’installation “Transport XX” – une série de portraits photos des juifs qui devaient être emmenés de Malines à Auschwitz le 19 avril 1943 (organisée par le BELvue Musée à Bruxelles – 27 janvier au 15 mars 2009 – le long du Parc Royal juste en face du Palais Royal de Bruxelles).
Merci bien Marjan Verplancke et des autres collègues de la Kazerne Dossin à Malines (la Belgique) et le projet ‘Donnez-leur un visage’.

Kazerne Dossin a digitalisé des photos de déportés de Dossin – la plupart proviennent des Dossiers de la Police des Étrangers (Archives Générales du Royaume).
Avec le projet ‘Donnez-leur un visage’ Kazerne Dossin vise à réunir le maximum de portraits de déportés afin de leur rendre un visage.
Vidéo © 2009 Michel van der Burg (michelvanderburg.com) — Certains Droits Réservés – Creative Commons license: Paternité-Partage des Conditions Initiales à l’Identique 3.0 Unported

More info on TRANSPORT XX and newer film versions

Original 2009 film version :
TRANSPORT XX – installation Brussels (in this post above)

Newer film versions (with description at the Vimeo site) :
Transport XX – face to face
NB . only minor corrections and new title

 

This version of the film ‘Transport XX – face to face’ was presented by Kazerne Dossin from January 2010 – ca 2012 on the site of the Task Force For International Cooperation On Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research (ITF , now the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance ( IHRA ), and on the frontpage of the Kazerne Dossin site from January 2011 – ca October 2012 – here a cached page from 2012.
Transport XX – face to face (2012)
NB. new cut

 

Transport XX face to face – 1 minute film

A special 1 minute film “Transport XX face to face” was selected in 2010 by The One Minutes and the dutch Museum of National History (innl) for the ‘Where history starts’ event on Nov 28th, 2010 in Paradiso, Amsterdam (Netherlands).

 

Que Siga el Calor – Samuel Truzman & Simon Lapscher

Music video “Que Siga el Calor – Samuel Truzman & Simon Lapscher” : An original song by Samuel Truzman , Simon Lapscher, and Moshe Bitton , with the film of portraits from “Transport XX Face To Face” by Michel van der Burg – matched to the song , was published as a special co-production for Yom HaShoah – Holocaust Memorial Day 2016.

Full Documentary film “Transport XX to Auschwitz” via this link

Info updated

20090504
20101130 replaced ‘ClipStills’ by VideoframesWork™
20111215 credits / link info
20120109 french credits
20121030 imported from imichel.com – updated –  replaced ‘storyboard’ for ‘VideoframesWork’
20160505 section “More info on TRANSPORT XX and newer film versions was added above
20171130 info on publication of Transport XX face to face on JMDV/Kazerne Dossin site and site ITF / updated links Kazerne Dossin (domain change from .com to eu)