The Life-Saving Art of Holocaust Survivor Trudie Strobel
Stitched & Sewn: The Life-Saving Art of Holocaust Survivor Trudie Strobel is a book about the stunning work and life of Los Angeles based Holocaust survivor and master embroidery artist, Trudie Strobel. Stitch by historical stitch, and bead by tiny bead, Strobel’s work weaves the stories of her life and the history of the Jewish people into vast tableaus. Her work makes us all witnesses to the devastating effects of intolerance, and it calls upon us to help weave our divided world into a more generous and harmonious state. A child survivor of the Holocaust, Trudie had settled first in Chicago and then in San Marino, California where she raised her family before the trauma of her youth caught up with her and sent her into a paralyzing state of depression. A therapist suggested that Trudie attempt to draw the memories that haunted her, and Trudie took his advice. However, Trudie did not use a pencil to draw, nor did she use paint or chalk or ink. Trudie chose to draw with needle and thread. Resurrecting the Yemenite stitches of her Jewish ancestors, Trudie began by stitching vast tableaus of her dark and personal memories of the Holocaust. What began as therapy exploded into works of breathtaking art, stitched portraits of remarkable likeness, narrative tapestries of Jewish history rendered in exacting detail. Strobel has a permanent exhibition at the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust. Her work has been on exhibit at the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Skirball Cultural Center. This is the first time that her work has been catalogued and photographed, an endeavor that has taken some forensics and much sleuthing. Photographer Ann Elliott Cutting has photographed over a hundred pieces of Strobel’s work. Writer Jody Savin has done copious interviews with Strobel and has written the story of her life and her call to create narrative art.
The Doll with the Yellow Star
by Yona Zeldis McDonough
(published 2005 by Henry Holt & Co.)
A children’s book inspired by Trudie’s dolls.