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Welcome | The Ripple Project - Part 3

The Ripple Project ONE Promo 2012

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Like a stone dropped into a pond, the Shoah created ripples. Radiating outward through the lives of individuals and communities, each one contains a story that continues to impact our lives. The Ripple Project:One is a film consisting of six 20-minute chapters, each documenting the lives of ordinary people living the ripple effect of extraordinary circumstances.

The film will introduce audiences to a sharp-minded poet in Maryland who has dedicated his life to recording the stories of fellow Shoah survivors; a grandfatherly painter in Brooklyn whose art provided a means of expressing, processing and sharing experiences beyond words; a New York-based Holocaust scholar and artist who visits a Jerusalem-based painter, survivor and friend hoping to encounter a living example of the courage of clandestine artists in the camps; a Rwandan genocide survivor documenting her journey as she seeks out the wisdom and guidance from a fading generation of Holocaust survivors; a Terezin survivor and star of the children’s opera Brundibar whose granddaughters in Florida who know little of their grandmother’s strength and nothing of her fame; A daughter discovers synchronicity between her scientific career and her father’s method of coping with his traumatic past.

While putting a human face on familiar, yet unfathomable, statistics, this character-driven narrative documentary highlights the multigenerational effect of genocide by giving audiences glimpses into the lives of survivors and their families living in communities much like our own in the United States, Europe and Israel. Each of the characters profiled conveys the responsibility of survivors and younger generations to pass on the lessons and experiences of the Shoah. Although the chapters are very much connected as present-day acts of historical remembrance, they are most basically human tales of the inheritance of creativity and the drive to share and preserve one’s own legacy and family story.

Miriam Friedman Morris

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David Friedman(n) [1893-1980] was a renowned painter and graphics artist in Berlin renowned for his portraits drawn from life. His quick-sketching talents led to an additional career as a leading press artist of the 1920’s. However, almost his complete works were looted by the Gestapo in 1941. David depicted human fate as a refugee in Prague, as a prisoner in the Lodz Ghetto, in the Gleiwitz I sub-camp of Auschwitz, and as a survivor. He survived the Lodz Ghetto by sketching portraits of officials in exchange for provisions. In Gleiwitz I, his artistic skills were recognized and his life spared by the whims of the SS. His wife and little daughter were ultimately killed despite his efforts to save them. Though David eventually remarried and built a new life first in Czechoslovakia, then Israel, Chicago, and finally in St. Louis, Missouri, he continued painting scenes from his tortured past. The responsibility of bearing witness weighed heavily on his conscience, even before his liberation. To give form to all that misery, to show it to the world – this was always his intent. Torn from his memories, he created the powerful series, Because They Were Jews!

David’s daughter Miriam from his second marriage has spent her life consumed by a drive to rescue his legacy from oblivion and ensure its rightful place in history. Knowing that his work would best survive through her own perseverance, Miriam has found herself on her own journey which has led to personal discovery unveiling lost history and prewar works. David’s art weaves a tapestry of the joys and horrors that he experienced, witnessed and chronicled. Significant exhibitions of her father’s art resulting from her successful pursuits have created a stronger conviction to preserve the legacy of David Friedmann for future generations.

A Day At Zuccotti Park

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I first went  to Zuccotti park on day three of the occupation.   I biked over mid-morning and there were maybe 200 people present who had camped out from the night before. Their purpose was unclear, but their determination was apparent and their presence raised the question: Why is there not a bigger movement taking place across the United States?

Soon the movement was growing, and as it grew- it began to encompass more issues, drawing attention to more and more of the countries problems.   As I spoke to people involved I realized that any one person’s opinion on these issues may clash completely with the next.  I realized that OWS was serving as a platform for many, a podium for anyone and everyone to voice their frustrations with the government.

There is no telling how this movement will grow and what change it will inspire- to document it seems almost to do it a disservice, to attempt to turn it into something static, to try to contain it.

I decided to  film what I saw and not focus on any one person’s agenda, to put politics aside and try to capture the energy of the spectacle that has inspired so many.   To show the frustrations, the anger, joy, excitement, knowledge; unity that I saw on people’s faces, emotions that we all share even if our opinions ultimately differ.



The Ripple Project: Reconsolidation Production in New York

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This past Friday, The Ripple Project marked the end of production on “Reconsolidation” the story of neuroscientist Daniela Schiller’s personal and professional struggle with the legacy of the Holocaust, a journey, which grapples with the very notion of fear, and our ceaseless efforts to surmount it.

Directed by Liron Unreich and with cinematographer David Stragmeister, this past week and a half of shooting has featured Daniela’s groundbreaking research at The Mount Sinai Medical Center in Manhattan alongside her talents as a storyteller and musician, her rocky-esque training as a kick boxer, and her ongoing experience as the daughter of a survivor.

We, at The Ripple Project eagerly await the fruit of out labors as “Reconsolidation” enters postproduction.

The Ripple Project Vignettes: What is Missing, Rethinking 9/11 Memorials

In collaboration with the Brooklyn Arts Council Dumbo Improvement District, this past Saturday, The Ripple Project marked the tenth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks with an interactive memorial alongside nine other stations featuring prominent artists on the streets of Dumbo. In a continuing effort to explore stories which lie behind the headlines and as part of the Brooklyn Arts Council’s Rethinking Memorial: Ten Interactive Sites for remembering 9/11, The Ripple Project sought out ordinary New Yorkers and asked a seemingly obvious yet oft overlooked question: “What is missing in the conversation surrounding 9/11?” The responses we received ran the gamut: many thoughtful and reflective, others colorful and controversial.


In documenting these responses we hoped to inspire a diversity of reactions: anger, renewal, denial, indignation, apathy, conspiracy theories, paranoia, patriotism, prejudice, and sadness, all while preserving a common thread of humanity in shared experience.

In the coming weeks we hope to edit this footage into a short, lyrical piece, which reflects our belief that the best memorial we can give to those who have passed is to continue to reflect and find new perspectives on the events of Sept.11th in the attempt to examine why the events of Sept.11th happened and what we can learn about ourselves in their aftermath.

The Ripple Project Vignettes: Paul Angell Plainfield, VT

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Paul Angell is my uncle, he has kept Plainfield, VT as his home base since 1975 but has always come and gone to travel and work abroad. This Vignette focuses on Paul’s time in Uganda in 1986 and 1987 as AIDS first began to take it’s toll on the country.

-Dylan Angell

Read/See more about Vignettes: here

The Ripple Project: Reconsolidation Production in Israel

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Director Liron Unreich and Producer Michael McDevitt have just returned from Israel after completing an exciting and revealing week of shooting The Ripple Project: One’s latest chapter with Cinematographer David Stragmeister.

Reconsolidation” begins with a clinical look into a neurological experiment as neuroscientist  Dr. Daniela Schiller, labors to discover the key to rewriting fearful memories — reconsolidation.
From Daniela’s research laboratory in New York she begins her personal search and returns to her native Israel to compel her elderly father to reveal his Holocaust remembrance for the first time.
What follows is a haunting exploration into the nature of memory, its power, its vulnerability, its promise and its generational effect.
Please click here to learn more about “Reconsolidation” and The Ripple Project : One‘s exploration of the multigenerational effects of the Shoah.

Shared Memory trailer

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Shared Memory is the one of the six chapters in our feature film The Ripple Project: One which examines the multigenerational effects of the Shoah, the inheritance of creativity and the responsibility of survivors and younger generations to impart the lessons of the past. The films will offer an inspirational message that reaches across time to engage a diverse audience and to ensure the memory of those who came before us will not fade away.

Painting helps a man express horrors beyond words.

“This was. This is.” Brooklyn-based artist and Shoah survivor, Fred Terna, declares gesturing towards two paintings—one ominous and dark, the other lighter, with hues of hope.  “This is how the memory changed.”   Shared Memory is part oral history, part private gallery tour where Terna invites the viewer into his home and discusses pieces from his carefully catalogued collection spanning the history of his artwork. Together, the paintings and Terna’s stories describe his path from the Czech Republic to Brooklyn, from surviving Theresienstadt to his taxing marriage with a fellow survivor. In Shared Memory, Terna reveals how painting is both a way of coping with the horrors he has experienced and a means to preserve his memories.

Click here to learn more about The Ripple Project: One.

WATCH: A conversation between Fred Terna and Rwandan genocide survivor and educator  Eugenie Mukeshimana, which took place after a private screening of Shared Memory.

The following letter was written to Shared Memory Director and The Ripple Project Cofounder, Liron Unreich, by Fred Terna.
Dear Liron,
I’m awed and delighted with the film.  You and your team have done a superb job, telling the story of my paintings.  Other film-makers have tried to make films about art and artists during the Shoah.  When they focused on me they somehow stayed on the surface, there was a distance, a gap, between my feelings and ideas and what I saw on the screen.  You are telling the story with great skill and insight, and I thank you.

During the Shoah we promised each other that the one who survives will tell about it. The burden is getting heavier as our numbers decrease, and you and  your group are carrying this obligation with us, and for us.

Please give my thanks to all who are working with you on The Ripple Project. Looking forward to hearing from you before long,


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Series One


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