Judy Chicago Prepares Holocaust Project

Judy Chicago, the feminist artist and author, has completed the first work of art related to her Holocaust project. It is an 18-foot tapestry design called “The Fall,” and depicts the process through which male domination, the glorification of rational thought and the perfection of assembly-line techniques led up to the Holocaust.

Chicago became interested in the Holocaust in 1985. She says that facts about the Holocaust had been “totally omitted from [her] education.” With her husband, photographer Donald Woodman, Chicago began an intensive study that ultimately led her to create a body of artwork and photography called the Holocaust Project.

“We went in search of our heritage as Jews,” writes Chicago, “and what we found was a large void, punctuated by a few enormously humane and generous Jews trying to keep some vestige of our shared culture alive.”

Frannie Yablonsky, a needlework artist with whom Chicago has worked in the past, is contributing to the project by exploring women’s experiences of the Holocaust. She has found that at least half the memoirs published about the Holocaust are by women, and she hopes to draw attention to many of these neglected works.