Mauricio Lasansky: The Nazi Drawings



The traveling exhibition The Nazi Drawings, which originated at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, brought together a suite of graphic work by the Argentinean-born and American-based printmaker and artist Mauricio Lasansky (1914–2012). It featured 30 life-sized portraits of shrouded forms in Nazi regalia that Lasansky produced in the summer of 1966 using lead pencil and water-based earth colors. The portraits are often accompanied by concentration camp numbers, skeletal teeth, and collaged newspaper clippings describing Nazi war crimes. Describing his working process, Lasansky noted, “I tried to keep not only the vision of the Nazi drawings simple and direct but also the material I used in making them. I wanted them to be done with a tool used by everyone everywhere.” Although Lasansky was not a survivor of the war nor the Holocaust, his figurative drawings encapsulate the terror and atrocities enacted by the Nazi regime during World War II.