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Violins and Hope Daniel Levin

Violins and Hope By Daniel Levin

Violins and Hope by Daniel Levin

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A visual chronicle of the the story of how violins from the Holocaust now sing in symphony halls.

Violins and Hope Summary

Violins and Hope: From the Holocaust to Symphony Hall by Daniel Levin

Amnon Weinstein, an Israeli master luthier (violin maker), began a project more than years ago that may be one of the most creative, effective, and magnificent approaches to education on the topic of the Holocaust. Trained by three of the most revered Cremona, Italian luthiers of the twentieth century, Weinstein's vision was to restore violins that survived the concentration camps and the ghettos, even when their owners often did not. To date, more than seventy violins have been restored to their highest playable condition. Following restoration, these hauntingly beautiful instruments have been used in performances by symphonies in Berlin, Cleveland, Istanbul, London, Quebec, Paris, San Francisco, and many other cities across the world. Purposefully, Weinstein makes certain that young musicians as well as members of some of the world's most famed orchestras perform on them to packed concert halls. In doing so, it's as if the past owners of the instruments return to fill the listener-observer's mind and body. In Violins and Hope, Daniel Levin has made the most compelling and beautiful series of photographs documenting Weinstein's collection of violins, his workshop in Tel Aviv, and his processes for restoration. This book is not a document of place, as much as it is a document of the ethereal. For what Weinstein has done with these lost violins has been to transform tragic loss into triumph in the most inciteful and powerful way imaginable. The care that Levin has taken to hone in on the idiosyncrasies of Amnon's workshop, and his uncanny ability to celebrate the beauty of light, is nothing short of remarkable. The book's foreword is written by arguably the most well-suited individual anywhere. Born in Austria, Franz Welser-Moest is one of the most acclaimed conductors of the twenty-first century. He has been Music Director of the Cleveland Orchestra since 2002, and, under his direction, The Cleveland, as it has been fondly named by The New York Times, has had twenty international tours, with shimmering reviews. All too aware of his ancestry, Welser-Moest takes on our mutual history as no one else could. And the book concludes with Levin's interview with Assi Weinstein, Amnon's wife, who talks about the Violins of Hope project and its enduring legacy.

About Daniel Levin

Daniel Levin is a contemporary artist and documentary photographer whose works primarily address social justice issues and an Associate Professor of Photography at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, Ohio. Levin's works include Amnon Weinstein: The Luthier who Returned the Violins of the Holocaust to the Living, Perspectives Examined via the site-specific Camera Obscura, Organizational Successes and Failures of Post-Katrina Mississippi, Fatherhood, Walls as Metaphor for Divided Philosophies, and an art film exploring creative thought entitled The Root: From Dishes to Synapses. His film To The Contrary, which celebrates the beauties of the mundane in a tumultuous world through high-speed HD cinematography, premiered in 2020 at Spaces Gallery in Cleveland, Ohio. Levin has been commissioned to make portraits of many well-known figures around the globe, including in part; Joshua Bell, President George H. W. Bush, I.M. Pei, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, Idan Raichel, First Lady Barbara Bush, Jann Wenner, Governor Mario Cuomo, Martin Sheen, and Senator John Glenn. Franz Welser-Moest, a violinist from Austria who studied under the composer Balduin Sulzer, has been Music Director and Principal Conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra since 2002. Previously, he was Music Director with the Zurich Opera House (1995-2000) and Norrkoeping Symphony Orchestra in Sweden.

Additional information

Violins and Hope: From the Holocaust to Symphony Hall by Daniel Levin
George F. Thompson
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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