One-of-a-Kind Immersive Holocaust Museum Experience Coming to Phoenix
By Claire Natale -
Tuesday Oct 18, 2022
PHOENIX– The Arizona Jewish Historical Society is honored to announce that Phoenix will be one of only 12 locations worldwide to feature a holographic-like video of a local holocaust survivor. Part of a new original exhibit, Stories of Survival: An Immersive Journey through the Holocaust, is coming to Phoenix on Nov. 9, also known as Kristallnacht Remembrance Day.
As World War II and the holocaust get pushed further into history, it becomes even more important to archive the memories of past events so that generations to come can remember. This compelling museum will showcase experiences to help visitors learn and understand the impact of the holocaust on the Jewish community and how the public can carry the stories and lessons with them.
“We are humbled to preserve the stories of those who endured the horrific events that occurred during the holocaust,” said Lawrence Bell, Executive Director of AZJHS. “Our hope is that Oskar’s story will live on to teach others about the power of our words and actions. This new exhibit is meant to inform and educate the public about the dangers of hate speech and the idea that any race, religion, or background is above others.”
The installation will feature an interactive real time Q & A holographic of Oskar Knoblauch, a local survivor of the holocaust who has made it his mission to never let the horrors of the Holocaust be forgotten. The Shoah Foundation’s, Dimensions in Testimony, is a 3D life size holographic of Knoblauch that “comes alive” as he educates by answering questions from visitors with his true story and the story of others who were affected by the holocaust. The horrors he experienced will live on to teach the lessons he learned of treating humans with respect, understanding self-love and loving others through hardship, and being an upstander who speaks up for those being bullied and mistreated by their peers.
"I had a fulfilling and quite memorable childhood until in 1933 when at the age of eight, my life was shattered by the onset of Nazism. Hitler spread propaganda that Jews were a horrible, dirty, and evil race. My family was none of these and I hope people can learn from my experience," said Knoblauch.
The second immersive and educational experience will be a virtual walk-through of a concentration camp with the utilization of VR. A 360-degree, virtual reality experience will captivate visitors with an Oculus Quest Meta Head and Hand Controlled video. Visitors will be immersed in the powerful 16-minute award-winning Shoah Foundation virtual-reality film, The Last Goodbye, that transports viewers inside the Nazi death camp Majdanek in Poland.
The Arizona Jewish Historical Society is located at 122 E. Culver Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004-1720.
About Arizona Jewish Historical Society
The Arizona Jewish Historical Society preserves and celebrates the rich heritage of Arizona’s Jewish communities, educates the public about the Jewish historical experience including the Holocaust, and promotes awareness of our state’s diverse history through arts, culture, and educational programming.