Peter Max, who was invited to portray 4 former US presidents, is now a successful and renowned artist. However, as a hoary-headed old man, he has never forgotten his first teacher—an older sister living in an alley in Shanghai —who introduced him into the temple of art 70 years ago. In order to flee Nazi persecution, Peter and his family came to Shanghai 70 years ago where he spent his happy and beautiful childhood by playing and studying with his Chinese little friends. 70 years later, he revisited this place, hoping to find and repay his teacher sister who, unfortunately, has long gone.

Oil painting, Teaching Painting in the Alley (Photo Credit: CC - BY Zhang Ping, Chinese Jewish Cultural Foundation)

Oil painting, Teaching Painting in the Alley (Photo Credit: CC – BY Zhang Ping, Chinese Jewish Cultural Foundation)

A by-lane in Hongkew (Photo Credit: CC - BY Passage Through China, The Jewish Communities of Harbin, Tientsin and Shanghai, The Nahum Goldmann Museum of the Jewish Diaspora)

A by-lane in Hongkew (Photo Credit: CC – BY Passage Through China, The Jewish Communities of Harbin, Tientsin and Shanghai, The Nahum Goldmann Museum of the Jewish Diaspora)

Special thanks to Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum for providing the sources of literature and photo on this topic. Further contact with Chinese Jewish Cultural Foundation (CJCF) via email:postmaster@cjcf.org.cn‍.