New Digital Platform Celebrates Else Lasker-Schüler

Lasker-Schüler, one of Germany's greatest poets, fled to Jerusalem in the 1930s. "Poetic Textures: Else Lasker-Schüler Archives. An Online Platform" offers digital access to a large portion of her literary and artistic legacy.

The National Library of Israel
09.07.2020
Else Lasker-Schüler in 1919, the Abraham Schwadron Portrait Collection, the Pritzker Family National Photography Collection at the National Library of Israel

Else Lasker-Schüler (1869-1945) is considered to be one of the greats of German poetry, a bohemian artist who corresponded with many of the most prominent cultural figures of her time including Albert Einstein, Martin Buber and Thomas Mann. She fled Nazi Germany to British Mandatory Palestine, ultimately settling in Jerusalem, where she lived a life of obscurity and poverty.

Poetic Textures: Else Lasker-Schüler Archives. An Online Platform” is a collaboration between Jerusalem’s National Library of Israel (NLI), home to Lasker-Schüler’s personal archive, and the German Literature Archive (DLA), home to a significant collection of her works. The platform, available in English, provides a window into the life and work of Lasker-Schüler, offering digital access for the first time to a large portion of her physically scattered literary and artistic legacy, accompanied by explanatory and illuminating texts provided by leading experts.

Der zielende Blitz übt sich im Pfeil und Bogen vor, by Else Lasker-Schüler, 1940, the Else Lasker-Schüler Archive at the National Library of Israel

The materials on display reveal the deliberately hybrid forms of Lasker-Schuler’s work: manuscripts, letters, telegrams, fragments, collages and drawings, which reveal the dissolution of boundaries between life and art, writing and drawing, staged self and imaginary figures, even between German and Hebrew in tone, writing and illustration. The platform has been made possible with the generous support of Karl Albrecht.

An online event celebrating the launch of “Poetic Textures” will be held on Tuesday, July 14 at 19:00 Israel time / 18:00 German time.  The event is presented as a DLA – NLI collaboration, and as part of the “Gesher L’Europe” initiative to connect NLI with people, institutions and communities in Europe and beyond.

“Poetic Textures: Else Lasker-Schüler Archives. An Online Platform” is available at: www.laskerschuelerarchives.org.   If you liked this, try these articles as well: “Stranger Things” in Jerusalem: Goethe and Goebbels in the Ticho Family Garden “I Heard That Germany Had Surrendered” – Memories of VE Day in Mandatory Palestine Book Diplomacy: Curt Wormann and the International Librarians

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