SAMY BRISS – IASI DARK DAYS
Iasi Zile Negre (Iasi Dark Days), is the first presentation in Romania of the entire series of drawings produced about the Jassy pogrom in 1948.
The childhood memories of Briss, (b. 1930, Jassy), connect two contrasting worlds. Life in the large Jewish community of Jassy instilled Jewish culture deep into his being. Concurrently, Briss was exposed to the Christian world, rich with traditional Romanian art and the famous icons of Iaşi, the former capital of Moldavia, recognized also as the cultural capital of Romania. Sami Briss, born in 1930, paints a narrative of nostalgia. His work portrays childhood memories, in an atmosphere of harmony and joie de vivre. The dream-like ambience of his paintings conceals a personal history of struggle with persecution and pogroms. Briss immigrated to Israel in 1959 at the age of 29. After the death of his first wife in 1974 he moved to Paris, where he has lived ever since – still maintaining his strong connections to Israel while exhibiting frequently throughout Europe. In the weave of times, these childhood memories acquire a mythical and universal status.