Holocaust Remembrance Day poster contest winner addresses stolen identity

Winning entry depicts student's grandfather as a boy during the Holocaust.

March 30, 2017 19:02
1 minute read.
Tamar Odaya Bodner

Tamar Odaya Bodner and her grandfather Yoseph Yishaya Bodner.. (photo credit: YAD VASHEM)


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An Israeli student on Thursday won Yad Vashem’s annual poster competition for Holocaust Remembrance Day, which will be marked in Israel on April 24. The contest is open to applicants from all over the world, but this year the award went to Israel’s own Tamar Odayna Boder, for her depiction of her grandfather as a child during the Holocaust.

Bodner’s poster depicts a faint image of a young boy, partially eroded by a sea of printed numbers – one of which was tattooed by the Nazis on the forearm of her grandmother, Miriam Bodner, an Auschwitz survivor.

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The judges panel, headed by Israel Prize for Design laureate David Tartakover, noted that “the shadowy figure behind the numbers is a reminder of our duty to remember the Holocaust victims as human beings, with individual and distinct identities. This meaningful image represents the complexity of Holocaust remembrance.”

Bodner, a third-year undergraduate student in the department of graphic design at Jerusalem’s Emunah College, was inspired by the central theme for this year’s Remembrance Day: “Restoring their identities: the fate of the individual during the Holocaust.” Bodner told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday that the symbol of the numbers tattooed by the Nazis on the arms of Jews is a powerful one; something that took away their individuality and humanity.

“But in all this, there was still the unique person who remained a human being,” she says, explaining why she decided to focus on the face of her grandfather as a young boy.

Yoseph Yishaya Bodner, now 93-years-old, was moved by his granddaughter’s portrayal and joined her at the award ceremony.

Bodner was rescued by righteous gentiles in Slovakia, after hiding in the woods.

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