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2017-03-08

Synagogue – monument in good condition

Former synagogues in Kielce and Koronowo and a funeral home in Gliwice are vying to receive the title of "Monument in Good Condition".

We already know the structures nominated in the "Monument in Good Condition" competition organised by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, the Chief Conservation Officer and the National Heritage Board of Poland. This year, 94 monuments from 15 provinces have been accepted for the competition.

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Herszel Zagajski's former house of prayer in Kielce, photo by Foundation New Space of Art   

The list of applicants include Herszel Zagajski's former house of prayer in Kielce. In 2015, the New Space of Art Foundation and the Dorbud Company conducted a complex operation of moving the building from its original location, the backyard of a building at 3 Słowackiego St., to a square near the Jewish cemetery. For a few months, this small synagogue has served Hasidim who come to Kielce to pray at the grave of Tzadik Mordechaj Twerski.

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The Synagogue Culture Centre in Koronowo, photo by Lech Przybyliński   

The Synagogue Culture Centre in Koronowo has been nominated in the “Adaptation of historical structures” category. The centre is located in a former mid-19th century synagogue, recently thoroughly renovated by the town's authorities. Today, it is a venue for concerts, film screenings and other cultural events.

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Upper Silesian Jews House of Remembrance, former funeral home at the Jewish cemetery in Gliwice, photo by Krzysztof Bielawski / POLIN   

The "Monument in Good Condition" title can also go to a former funeral home at the Jewish cemetery in Gliwice. This large building was erected in 1903 to a design by Vienna architect Max Fleischer. A few years ago, the unused funeral home was taken over by the city and renovated. Since January 2016, it houses the Upper Silesian Jews House of Remembrance, a Gliwice Museum branch.

The competition winners will be announced on 19 April 2017, at a gala marking the International Day for Monuments and Sites.

Krzysztof Bielawski

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