June 6 2018: Nelly is introduced to the world of Virtual Reality.
This year, the team of Imagining A Better World: The Nelly Toll Story reconvened with the Massillon Museum in Ohio to create an immersive virtual reality experience of Nelly's journey through her imagination. For the first time, Nelly was introduced to the technology. View her reaction here.
May 11 2017: Middle School Goes "Behind The Secret Window" with Mrs. Nelly Toll.
"Over the course of a ten week-period, Mrs. Toll spoke to our students, emphasizing the positive values and lessons she gained from her experiences as a child in the Holocaust. Each week they met with Mrs. Toll and listened to another "chapter" in her life", explained Marilyn Roth, Director of General Studies at Politz Middle School in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. View reactions here.
February 22 2017: Ohio Museums Join Effort to Preserve Federal Arts Funding
It’s being organized by the American Alliance of Museums, which represents everything from volunteer-run historic houses to the Cleveland and Cincinnati art museums. Although this event has gone on for nearly a decade, participants say there’s more urgency, this year.. Read more here.
August 4 2016: Keeping Faith
Director and Producer diane estelle Vicari talks about the importance of faith in her films and her recurring theme of how one man can make a difference. Read more here.
April 2016: MassMu Earns Three Ohio Museums Association Awards for Imagining a Better World: The Artwork of Nelly Toll
Read more here.
April 2016: SJ Magazine, Behind the Sealed Window - How Nelly Toll Survived World War II
Many of Toll’s paintings, including seven contemporary works, are now part of a traveling show of facsimiles, first exhibited at the Massillon Museum in Ohio. During the show’s recent run in San Antonio, Texas, Toll spoke with students, one of her favorite pastimes. View the whole story here.
Mar. 28 2016: NBC News, Holocaust Survivors' Art on Display For First Time in Berlin
"The portraits are portraits of beautiful people, of proud people," Dorlis Blume, a director at the German Historical Museum, told NBC News in Berlin. "Not of victims, or destroyed people, as you usually see." View the whole story here.
Mar. 13 2016: MySJ - FAITH, In art, 'I forgot to be afraid' : Holocaust survivor's paintings on display
Adults in the audience couldn't get a word in as hands continued to jet in the air. They listened intently as Toll talked about the 18 months she and her mother spent in hiding in a tiny apartment in Lwów, Poland, in fear of being discovered by Nazi soldiers. Read the article as a PDF here.
Mar. 3 2016: KENS 5, Dr. Nelly Toll Visits Little Flower Catholic School, San Antonio, TX
"I feel that the young generation is the future of the country and if they learn not to live prejudiced and accept everyone for what they are, there is hope that we will have less problems as the time goes on...", says Dr. Nelly Toll. View the whole story here.
Mar. 2 2016: Jewish Community Voice, Nelly Toll recounts trip to Berlin for historic exhibit featuring her art
More than 70 years after she created the art, the long ago experience of passing time by painting and writing accompanying stories is now like a surreal dream, just barely a memory at this point in her life. View the whole story here.
Mar. 2 2016: News4, Holocaust Hidden Child Survivor in town with Art Exhibit, San Antonio, TX
Dr. Nelly Toll explains, "We had to whisper so nobody would hear us and I got this little watercolor box..." View the whole story here.
Feb. 18 2016: ArtsinStark, Massillon Museum’s Holocaust Art Exhibition Travels across the Continent
The Imagining A Better World traveling exhibit is opening at locations across North America. For dates and locations, read the full story here.
Feb. 3 2016: Philly.com, Voorhees artist and her work at hand, Germans mark Holocaust
Philly.com covers the Holocaust art exhibit at the German Historical Museum in Berlin featuring Nelly's art. Read more.
Jan. 26 2016: The Guardian, Angela Merkel opens Holocaust art show with warning on antisemitism
German chancellor says refugees from the Middle East, where hatred of Jews is ‘widespread,' must learn about the Holocaust. Read the full story
Jan. 22 2016: The New York Times, ‘Art From the Holocaust’: The Beauty and Brutality in Forbidden Works
"Ms. Toll said her mother begged the family hiding them to procure watercolors and told her that the captivity was part of a plan to help stimulate their imaginations," writes Mary M. Lane in a recent New York Times article featuring Nelly's story. Read the full article here.
Jan. 2016: Nelly Toll’s paintings travel to Berlin.
On January 25th, The Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin, in partnership with the Stiftung für Kunst und Kulture. V. Bonn and at the initiative of the BILD in Germany, will open a new exhibition entitled Art From the Holocaust: 100 Works from the Yad Vashem Collection.
This traveling exhibit of 100 artworks from Yad Vashem’s permanent collection is especially important for a number of reasons. For one, Yad Vashem rarely loans original artworks. Of the 50 artists whose works will be displayed at the exhibition, 24 were murdered by the German Nazis and their collaborators, and half of them survived. Of the survivors, Dr. Nelly Toll is the only one still living today. Paintings from Nelly’s collection at Yad Vashem, entitled: “A Lucky story,” will be traveling to Germany as part of this historical event. In a letter to Dr. Toll, Yad Vashem writes: “sending 100 pieces of artwork from its vast collection overseas is remarkable enough, but to be sending the art to Germany is truly historic." Nelly will attend the opening with her husband Ervin Toll. Filmmaker diane estelle Vicari, in partnership with the Massillon Museum in Ohio, will be filming the event for the Imagining A Better World documentary.
Beyond the variety of approaches, the different styles and the multiplicity of themes evoked, all the artworks testify to the power of the human spirit that refused to surrender. The art created under inhuman conditions and in secret is testament to the power of the human spirit in the face of misery and death. The artwork displayed encompasses both the harsh reality of the Holocaust as well as a desperate flight into the realm of imagination.
January 25th is significant as it marks the establishment of a relationship between Israel and Germany; last year marked its 50th anniversary. Also significant is that January 27, in 2006, was established as the International Holocaust Commemoration date, aligned with the liberation of Auschwitz. To illustrate the importance of this, Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel, among esteemed guests, will be present for the opening of the exhibit on January 25.
The exhibition was created in cooperation with Bonner Stiftung Für Kunstund Kultur, the Deutschen Historischen Museum and Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Rememberance Center, the foremost authority for Holocaust documentation, commemoration, research and education. Exhibition opens to the public January 26th - April 3rd.