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Lithuanian ambassador visits Burlington’s ‘Lost Mural’

Published: Aug. 20, 2021 at 3:25 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - The Lithuanian Ambassador to the U.S. was in Burlington Friday to celebrate her country’s support for a historic, Jewish mural that was rediscovered nearly a decade ago.

The “Lost Mural” was originally painted in 1910 by Lithuanian artist Ben-Zion Black for Burlington’s original Ohavi Zedek Synagogue, part of the thriving Little Jerusalem neighborhood in Burlington. It was rediscovered in 2012 behind wallboard when the building was sold and has been part of an extensive restoration effort that included moving it to the synagogue’s current location.

Ambassador Audra Plepytė says murals like this used to flourish in Lithuania but vanished over time. She says the efforts to preserve this artwork in the Queen City is special. Since occupation and everything, they were converted. They were not synagogues for many years. So, they were converted to others. So, murals, which they also used to have, they didn’t survive, unfortunately. But to come to Burlington and to see this wonder, this shining mural now, it’s very emotional, and it’s very important,” she said.

The restoration of the mural is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

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