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Liliana Syrkis

Liliana Syrkis, photography by Ane Hinds
 

Liliana Syrkis, nee Binensztok, was born in 1923 in Pińsk. In 1939, she was transported together with her younger sister and mother to Siberia, where she worked in the kolkhoz. One year after the war they returned to Poland. In the mid-1940s Liliana left for Sweden and one year later she went to Brazil, invited by her uncle who had been living in Rio de Janeiro for many years.

After coming to Rio de Janeiro Liliana Syrykis started working as an assistant in a boutique that sold hats. The owner of the boutique was her soon-to-be mother-in-law, the mother of Eugeniusz Syrykis. Soon Liliana got married. For many years Liliana Syrykis had been running Maison Colette, one of the most renowned fashion showrooms in Rio de Janeiro.

Liliana Syrkis wrote down her reminiscence in an autobiography titled “Lila”.


Interview by Aleksandra Pluta on 6th May 2015 in Rio de Janeiro.

interview excerpts
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The last fugitives from Pińsk
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Learning in Siberia
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Invitation to Brazil
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Necessary stop in Sweden
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Journey from France to Brazil
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Work at a milliner’s
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Emigration organization from Lublin
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The land of tolerance
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