Warsaw, May 2014 – Shachar Pinsker

Warsaw, May 2014

On May 2014, I visited Warsaw (ווארשע) to do research for my book on urban cafés and modern Jewish culture. Here are some photos from my visit at the new Museum of the History of Polish Jews, and from walking around this incredible city, where traces of Jewish life are present almost everywhere.

The Museum of the History of Polish Jews:

This 18th century wooden synagogue was created by craftsmen and volunteers inside the museum, and will be part of the permanent exhibition

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The temporary exhibition about Pre-War Warsaw ווארשע features Tlomackie 13,  which functioned like a café for many Yiddish writers and journalists.



Tlomackie 13

Ziemianska cafe
Café Ziemiańska (Mazowiecka 12) was the space where the Skamander group (Julijan Tuwim, Anthony Slonimksi and other Jewish-Polish writers), sat and wrote poetry, as well as pieces for the “Qui pro Quo ” cabaret not far from the café.



Dom Kereta/Keret House occupies the space between two apartment building and named after the Israeli writer Etgar Keret, who spent some time in “his house” in (not far from his mother was born and survived the war).

Dom Kereta: Etgar Keret in da houz…

Shachar Pinsker and Ken Frieden at Cafe Próżna (Próżna 12):

Café Próżna : this is the only café in the original pre-war building that survived Second World War

In this photo (taken by Olga Gershenson) you can see me discussing cafes and Jewish culture with Ken Frieden.

This is the famous Próżna street, which is the only Warsaw street with pre-war buildings that remained more or less untouched even after the destruction of the Ghetto. The amazing thing about it is that they use it for art and cultural events like the (Bashevis) Singer’s festival. For more information about this street and about the festival see their Facebook page




Here used to be the bridge (between the two parts of the Ghetto) in Polish, Yiddish and Hebrew.

This is where the bridge of the ghetto on Chlodna St. (near Keret’s house) used to be. The sign is in Yiddish, Hebrew and Polish.



The grave of the Hebrew writer Uri Nissan Gnessin at the Jewish cemetery of Warsaw
The grave of the Hebrew writer Uri Nissan Gnessin at the Jewish cemetery of Warsaw

The old Jewish Cemetery in Warsaw (which survived the War and is one of the most magical places in Warsaw). The photograph is the hard to find tombstone of the great Hebrew modernist writer Uri Nissan Gnessin. Not far from this spot is אוהל פרץ, where Y.L. Peretz, S. An-sky and Yankev Dinezon are buried.

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