Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
Photo original
A documentary about European Jews who fled Europe to escape the Nazis and found refuge in Ecuador.
Created by

Eva Zelig

226 backers pledged $41,630 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates

Photos

4292702b5c51457bfa54942c7ddc9d2f original

Screening this Saturday in Manhattan

Dear supporters of An Unknown Country,

Good news:  An Unknown Country will be screened in New York City at the 20th Lower East Side Festival of the Arts on Saturday, May 23, 1:40 PM. Theater for the New City, 155 First Avenue (between 9th & 10th Streets), Manhattan. Free admission.

I will be there for the post-screening Q&A. Other films will also be shown that day from 1 PM to midnight.

Please spread the word to family/friends/acquaintances in the New York area. 

Thank you.

Eva

Reporting from Ecuador

15 likes

Dear friends of An Unknown Country,

I am reporting again from Ecuador, where I returned to participate in a series of events in the city of Cuenca that relate to topics explored in my documentary.

It was only fitting that on Holocaust Remembrance Day, the museum of Casa de la Cultura of Cuenca officially opened the exhibition titled, "Culture and Exile: The Jewish Migration in Cuenca." An Unknown Country is projected continuously in the gallery during the run of the exhibit till May 15. The exhibition  features paintings in the museum's collection that my uncle, Oscar Schwarz, a refugee from Vienna, created when he lived in Cuenca. Also featured are works of art brought to Ecuador by the refugees. There is a display of photos of paintings of Cuenca and other sites in Ecuador created by Otto Kohn, a prominent architect from Prague. He taught architecture in Cuenca and designed its first modern building. Also shown are his photos of Cuenca from the early 1940s and vintage images of newspaper ads from various restaurants and cafes the Jewish exiles opened in Cuenca.

The handsome illustrated catalogue explores the history of Jewish persecution, aspects of the Jewish presence in Cuenca, as well as the story of my relatives, the Schwarz family, and essays by Otto Kohn and my cousin, Prof. Egon Schwarz. Casa de la Cultura invited my cousin (son of Oscar Schwarz), who had also lived in Cuenca. He gave a talk about emigration from Nazi Germany, and granted several press interviews, so he was in the spotlight daily as was the story of Jewish exile to Ecuador.

I joined my cousin, the exhibit's curator, and local scholars in a panel discussion that drew a large, attentive audience. It was gratifying to see so much attention paid to the cultural impact the Jewish refugees had in that city.

Here is a photo from the newspaper, El Mercurio, in which I'm seen at the museum next to one of my uncle's paintings that depicts the sorrow of exile.

Download "An Unknown Country"

5 likes

Dear friends and supporters of An Unknwon Country,

I finally can send you a download of the documentary to fulfill the promise I made to Kickstarter donors. Please remember, this is for your private use only, not for events or classrooms. If you plan a public screening, you need to alert me by email at: grilloproductionsny@gmail.com.

Here is the download link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/arnhsbsef5uinrh/An_Unknown_Country_SCREENER%202.zip?dl=0

Recently, the film had a public screening in New York City and two in Ecuador. Audiences have reacted with great enthusiasm and emotion. Will continue to  keep you informed about upcoming screenings. 

Thanks so much for all your support.

Eva

New York Screening of "An Unknown Country"

2 likes

Dear friends,

Just a reminder that the upcoming New York screening of An Unknown Country will take place Wednesday, January 21 at the Leo Baeck Institute/Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16 Street. Time: 6:30 PM.

For information & tickets: http://unknown-country.brownpapertickets.com

General: $10. LBI members: $5. You can also reserve tickets by phone (212-744-6400). 

Dr. Leo Spitzer, Vernon Professor of History Emeritus at Dartmouth College, and author of Hotel Bolivia: The Culture of Memory in a Refuge from Nazism (1998), will give a talk to introduce the film. There will be a reception afterwards. 

I you know anyone who might be interested in the film, please spread the word.

Again, thanks for your support of this project.

Eva

Matching Grant Deadline

Dear friends of An Unknown Country,

You may recall that a generous anonymous donor pledged a $1000 matching grant to this film project that tells the story of Jewish exile to Ecuador. However, his offer is valid only until this month.

If you wish to make a year-end tax-deductible donation, large or small, or know someone who may wish to contribute, please note these instructions: 

MAKING A TAX DEDUCTIBLE DONATION BY CREDIT CARD: Click or copy/paste this link: http://www.nywift.org/article.aspx?ID=3591 -- This will lead you to the film project's page in my fiscal sponsor’s website. The sponsor is New York Women in Film & Television (NYWIFT). Under the title, AN UNKNOWN COUNTRY, you will see this: DONATE NOW. Select it and you will reach the registration/donation page where you can follow instructions on how to donate by credit card.*

Again, many thanks for your past support.

Happy Holidays!

Eva 

*Note: New York Women in Film & Television (NYWIFT) acts as a non-profit umbrella organization for film and video makers seeking to raise funds who require non-profit status to do so. NYWIFT accepts tax deductible contributions on their behalf, and administers and disburses those funds back to them.