Chapter 1: Petr’s Imagination

Petr’s Imagination

Petr’s primary artistic inspirations were science, nature and the magical city of Prague. His fascination with science and space, and his love of the author Jules Verne, can be found not only in his drawings, paintings and writings, but also in the fantastical flying machines that he carved out in the form of linocuts. While his imagination often led to art that explored the possibilities of space, he was equally captivated by the natural world. Whether in Prague or in Terezin, Petr captured on canvas the beauty around him.

Discussion Questions

  1. What form of artistic expression did Petr capitalize on while in Terezin? What does he create with this art form?
  2. Utilizing the following quote from Petr, examine his artwork carefully and determine a “calm” and “ecstatic” expression. Describe briefly why each piece reflects his 1943 Vedem quote.
    “Calm art reveals the artist’s core; ecstatic art shows his mood.” – Petr Ginz, Linocuts, Vedem, 1943
  3. Petr’s sister, Chava Pressburger, speaks about her dear brother. How does she describe her impressions of Petr? What do you notice about Chava as she speaks of Petr?

Extention Activities

  1. Research Petr’s favorite author, Jules Verne. How did his drawings, painting, and writings reflect his love of Verne’s work? Cite examples from the webisode.
  2. Research “art in Terezin” . Discover what tools were available for the children to create art in Terezin. Describe additional examples of art that exist today from this time period. What art forms were present, what is the theme of the artistic expression, how do these works of art express the time period.

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