Marcel SLODKI

LODZ (POLAND) 1892 – DEPORTED TO AUSCHWITZ 1943

Marcel Slodki was born into a secular, liberal family; his father was a bank manager. Slodki studied at a high school in Lodz and left for Munich in 1910, where he studied at the School of Fine Arts. He arrived in Paris in 1913 and lived at 2 bis rue Pernel for a year, in the Douanier Rousseau’s former studio. He moved to Switzerland in 1914 and he met Tristan Tzara in Zurich. He drew Dada posters for the cabaret La Scene and illustrated several works by Chekhov. He also worked for an architect and designed town plans, which he later used in his work. Slodki returned to Poland, where he painted views of Kazimierz and Kuzmir. He later traveled to England and continued to design town plans in London. Following World War I, he designed theater sets in Berlin.

In 1923, he returned to Paris and resumed painting. He destroyed all of his earlier work that was inspired by Cubism, which he later regretted. In 1937, he returned to Poland where an exhibition of his work was taking place. He painted portraits, city views, and still lifes. He married Macha Boulanger, who was also a painter. When World War II broke out, he left for Brive where he joined his wife and resumed painting. He exhibited his work despite the difficulties of the war. In 1943, French police officers came to arrest him. Thanks to the subprefect who warned him on time, he hid, obtained forged documents, and fled to Chambéry with his wife. They settled in Bourg-Saint-Maurice, in a chalet at 2,000 meters altitude. They were denounced on December 14, 1943. Macha and Marcel Slodki were arrested by Gestapo agents and were interned in Drancy. On December 17, 1943, they were deported on convoy number 63. They were murdered in Auschwitz.