Joseph Feingold, Holocaust survivor and documentary star, dies at 97

The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Thursday, June 13, 2024

Joseph Feingold, Holocaust survivor and documentary star, dies at 97
Joseph Feingold playing the violin in a scene from “Joe’s Violin,” in 2017. Feingold, a Holocaust survivor who found unexpected fame late in life as the co-star of “Joe’s Violin,” an Oscar-nominated short documentary, died on April 15 at Mt. Sinai West Hospital in New York due to COVID-19 complications. He was 97. Bob Richman via The New York Times.

by Steven Kurutz

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Joseph Feingold, a Holocaust survivor who found unexpected fame late in life as the co-star of “Joe’s Violin,” an Oscar-nominated short documentary, died April 15 at Mt. Sinai West Hospital in Manhattan. He was 97.

His stepdaughter Ame Gilbert said the cause was complications of COVID-19.

In 2014, Feingold was listening to his favorite classical music station, WQXR, when he heard about a program that gives used instruments to New York City schoolchildren. He took the bus from his home on Manhattan’s Upper West Side to Lincoln Center and donated a cherished violin he no longer played because his fingers had grown stiff.

Mention of his donation was made over the radio. The violin — and Feingold — had quite a story, as Kahane Cooperman, a filmmaker who was listening, soon discovered.

Born March 23, 1923, in Warsaw, Poland, Joseph Feingold was 17 when the Nazis invaded Poland. He and his father, Aron, a shoemaker, fled to the Russian-occupied east seeking safety. They were caught by the Russian army and sent to separate labor camps in Siberia. Six years of near-starvation and freezing cold followed.

Feingold’s mother, Ruchele, and a younger brother, Henry, had both stayed behind in Poland and perished in the concentration camps, he later learned. Another brother, Alex, miraculously survived Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen.

While he was at a displaced person’s camp near Frankfurt, Germany, Feingold spotted a violin at a flea market and traded cigarettes for it. Music reminded him of happier times before the war, he said in a self-published memoir. Feingold back then would accompany his mother on the violin as she sang for family and guests.

Feingold emigrated to New York City along with his father and brother and the flea-market violin.

The trauma of the Holocaust trailed him. He got a late start in life, graduating from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture when he was 39 and marrying his wife, Regina, in his late 40s.

He became a successful architect known for his mastery of the city’s Byzantine building codes. He bought a brownstone on the Upper West Side and a ramshackle farmhouse in Ghent, New York, rebuilding the house and old barns and cutting paths through the woods, to make a beloved retreat.

Cooperman recounted Feingold’s saga in her 2017 documentary and also told the story of the violin’s recipient, Brianna Perez, a 12-year-old Dominican girl from the Bronx, and the friendship that formed between the two.

In addition to Gilbert, Feingold is survived by four step-grandchildren and a step-great-granddaughter.

He had difficulty in being open and warm with his family, relatives said. His relationship with his brother was complicated by the tragic history they shared.

After his brother died last month from pneumonia, Feingold started having nightmares about the Holocaust.

Apparently, such dreams had haunted him periodically for years, though Gilbert said she learned that only recently. She wished it were sooner. “It would have allowed me more compassion,” she said.

© 2020 The New York Times Company

Today's News

April 24, 2020

The Met announces dozens of layoffs as potential losses swell to $150 million

Annual MassArt Signature Benefit Art Auction on Bidsquare continues to attract the most discerning collectors

Christie's announces highlights included in its Prints and Multiples sale

Lark Mason Associates Asian art online auction surpasses expectations

Clyfford Still Museum announces departure of director Dean Sobel

2020 Curatorial Awards For Excellence announced

Electroshock therapists for classic cars

Freeman's to offer single-owner collection of works by P.G. Wodehouse

Exhibition presents Australian Aboriginal art From the SmithDavidson Collection

Sotheby's unveils a new season of jewellery auctions

Olafur Eliasson creates new work as part of Serpentine's Back to Earth initiative

The '2 Lizards' of Instagram are coronavirus art stars

Designer Yuri Suzuki creates crowdsourced sound work in collaboration with the Dallas Museum of Art

Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts announces $400,000 in grants to nine organizations

Deirdre Bair, Beckett and Beauvoir biographer, dies at 84

Ann Sullivan, animator of Disney hits, dies at 91

South African hit 'Pata Pata' re-launched to fight coronavirus

Dreaming of returning home, Egypt's Nubians revive language

Joseph Feingold, Holocaust survivor and documentary star, dies at 97

From euphoria to tears: the story behind award-winning Sudan photo

Baltimore Museum of Art appoints Dr. Johnnetta Cole as Special Counsel on Strategic Initiatives

Ten galleries from India and Dubai get together to create a digital exhibhitions platform

Shirley Knight, Tony- and Emmy-winning actress, dies at 83

Renovation of France's Notre-Dame to resume Monday

Why good signage design matters?

Domaine de Chantilly exhibits Leonardo da Vinci's 'Nude Mona Lisa'

Things to Look for When Choosing an Real Money Online Casino

What Is the Best Drinking Game for Adults for a Party?

What are the benefits of cat furniture, should you be considering?

New therapy helps patients with dementia cope with depression

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez
Writer: Ofelia Zurbia Betancourt

Truck Accident Attorneys
Accident Attorneys

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. Hommage
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site Parroquia Natividad del Señor
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful