We recently had the opportunity to do some photography for our client Mount Royal University. They publish a magazine and we are lucky to be a part of it. We’ve done some photos in the past, but this issue was an incredible experience.
One of the sections of the magazine was a story about a couple who both were survivors of the concentration camps during World War II. Sid and Bronia Cyngisers graciously invited us into their home. They are part of the Holocaust Education Symposim. The Symposium was started over 30 years ago and as of this year over 50,000 students have attended When asked what got them involved, Bronia replied “when we heard what Jim Keegstra was teaching children about the Holocaust we decided to take action”
I sat with Bronia asking questions, but mostly listening how she was in Auschwitz with her mother and sister. She was 12 at the time. How her mother would take her portion of food and give it to both of them rather than eating herself. Hearbreaking story after story and by the end both of us were crying. She was the only one of the three to survive. Sid had his own stories, he was 21 at the time, he vividly remembers the very begining where the Jews were put in a ghetto, and later taken to concentration camps. His eyes welled up as he spoke, at times he had to stop because the stories were too much. When he was liberated weighed 76 lbs. and spent four years in hospital.
Eventually we had to get down to taking photographs, we decided with Art Director Michal Waissman that black and white was the best approach. We shot them together as well as individual portraits etc.
It was truly a life changing experience for us and we are honoured to have the opportunity to have met and talked with both of them.