Peter Z. Malkin was born in Zolkiewka, Poland, in 1929. In 1936, he, with his parents, escaped Poland to Palestine; although his sister and 150 relatives did not. They all met their deaths in Poland's concentration camps. As a teen, Malkin joined the Jewish Underground, eventually becoming a high ranking member of the Mossad, the Israeli Intelligence Agency. He used his talent as an artist as a cover for his mission in 1960 as a member of the Mossad to capture Adolf Eichmann, "Architect of the Holocaust", in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Although never formally trained as an artist, and because of the nature of his critical mission, Malkin was compelled to express himself directly and quickly, onto whatever surface he had in front of him. As a result, some of his works are painted on maps, drawn on newsprint and on the pages of guidebooks. He was on the move, had a capture expressions, compositions and subjects. His works therefore are small, his paints had to dry fast. Most of his paintings are figurative, people depicting profound emotions, a reflection of his upbringing, his experiences later in life. Malkin's art presents itself as a diary, a documentary of his intriguing life. Although his style is primitive, naive, the emotions evoked run deep.
Peter Malkin's fascinating body of work encapsulates every aspect of his life. It is a living biography that reflects his early childhood, traumatic memories, love, pain, the Holocaust, his family, Judaism, desperation, and hope.