The Open School of Art

starpatchThe Open School of Art, founded by artist Karoly Koffan, was a legitimate school, but also became a front to save Jews in Budapest during World War II. Lauren Krupa is collecting stories from teachers and students who worked to protect and save friends during the German occupation of Hungary in 1944 and 1945, in order to make a documentary film. Here is one such story:
Precise information from an informer led an officer of the Arrow Cross militia to search for a Jewish man who had slipped away from the ghetto at the studio of painter Lajos Szentivanyi. There was no time to arrange a proper hiding place, and the Jew simply concealed himself behind a screen in a room that was bad for hiding in, his yellow shoes peeking out beneath it. Fortunately, in the room was a spectacular nude painting that Szentivanyi was working on and from which the officer could not look away. Whether or not he saw the shoes, he stopped searching, spoke a few words to Szentivanyi and left.

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