Die Vorletzte station [The Next to the Last Station]
Id no. 126.97, Artwork, German
Created by:  Leo Haas
Subject(s):  Deportations, Trains
Czech artist Leo Haas was deported to the Terezin Ghetto in 1942, where he and other artists worked for the Nazis and also secretly created drawings and sketches based on their own experiences of ghetto life. In June 1944, some of these clandestine drawings were smuggled out of Terezin, and discovered by the Nazis. They arrested Haas and other artists (Ferdinand Bloch, Bedrich Fritta and Otto Ungar) and brutally interrogated them in the Small Fortress prison to discover who created the "atrocity art." Refusing to talk, all four men and other artists were deported to Auschwitz. Bloch and Fritta did not survive, while Ungar was sent to Buchenwald and Hass to Sachsenhausen, where he was forced to work as a counterfeiter. After the war (1946 ? 1964) Haas used his sketches to produce prints such as this one. This black and white print entitled "The Next to Last Station" (in German, "Die Vorletzte Station") shows a crowded cattle car being unloaded at the platform at Auschwitz. Haas later commented that, "At this station, they relieved the passengers of their earthly ballast." Then, at the last "station" the prisoner lost their lives in the gas chambers. Haas added that, "Not everyone had to wait so long to reach this goal."
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