The inspiration for the series of paintings entitled The Memory Calendar According to Bruno Schulz was
my creative collaboration with the Double Edge theatre in Ashfield, Massachusetts. Its founders had been interested in the work of Bruno Schulz for years. They were also familiar with my work because of the projects I had done with the Gardzienice Centre for Theatre Practices in Poland. In 2006, they asked me to work on the set design for their performance Republic of Dreams, in which the verbal layer was based on letters and selected texts by Bruno Schulz. Preparations for the performance revived my fascination with the work of this outstanding writer and my research extended well beyond the
performance itself. I came across a text delivered during the conference devoted to Bruno Schulz, which took place a year earlier in Lublin, Poland. In the text, Professor Schulte shared his discovery of the Jewish calendar that Schultz had hidden within the thirteen stories of Treatise on Tailors
Dummies (published in The Street of Crocodiles).
Following this clue, I decided to proceed in the opposite direction, trying to uncover what had been hidden. The paintings thus became pages of the thirteen months of the Jewish calendar. In leap years, the month of Adar is doubled, hence thirteen stories written by Schultz and thirteen
months. Each of my paintings is marked with the corresponding sign of the zodiac. I have taken the liberty of combining quotes from Schulz's drawings and my own commentaries emerging from the weekly Torah reading tradition. The fragments of Schulz's texts that are recalled in this work have
become an integral part of the creative subject matter of my painting, and his premonition about the
times of contempt and annihilation evoke in me the emotions that still cannot be subdued.
The paintings from the Memory Calendar series have been presented on many occasions and in many cities. As a conclusion, I wish to quote Professor Małgorzata Kitowska's commentary from the exhibition catalogue:
"(....) For someone with such a complex pedigree and a biographical path of Mira Żelechower - Aleksiun, reading Schulz's prose as a great calendar chronicle and its depiction must have been an obvious task. However, it is easy to say that today, when the painter has already wandered various
paths, which made the Schulz cycle almost a natural culmination of her spiritual and artistic quest, a closure both in life and in art. The cycle, of course, belongs within the broad area of Schultz biography, and his literary and artistic output reception, but at the same time, it provides the visual summary of the painter's own identity experiences. The palimpsest structure of each of the thirteen paintings, requiring complex intertextual interpretation, does not obliterate the profound connection between the representations she created and her own spiritual initiation."