Re -Action 1 Blindness – Shoah
Status: To be concluded
Event: racial genocide
Where: Germany / Poland
Contacts: Jewish communities of Warsaw and Berlin, survivors of the Holocaust and their relations
The project in progress “Blindness” is born as a reflection on some events that, for their own nature, cannot be considered as mere historical events to be dated and inscribed in our memory.
History is made of events whose memory stays as the last anchor needed in order to avoid seeing them wrecked in the oblivion of time and the subsequent events.
Today we talk a lot about “memory”, in a fragmented time, in which identity itself becomes thinner and even more broken down.
Memory turns out as an open debate, but too many times victim of its own bureaucracy, risking to become a sequence of dates on a calendar, in the memory of something we feel much and much further from us.
Action 1: Blindness – Shoah is a physical trail through the places of memory of what is only one of the examples of human “blindness”, that risks to get lost in its own commemoration, becoming an icon, losing all relations with the present.
The Shoah, the racial and nazi ideological genocide, didn’t end with the liberation of the Red Army in Auschwitz on 27th January 1945, it didn’t even simply start with the issue of the English mandate during the meeting of the Central Committee of the Socialist Party, with reference to the pogrom of the so-called “Crystal Night”.
This is why, remembering a date isn’t enough.
The Shoah was more than that.
The project “Blindness” wants to draw a light upon the nature of some events that actively regard us today, not only through their commemoration.
So the nature of Shoah is something immemorial, not to be imprinted in time.
It’s a more complex state of blindness that we can sadly find in other immemorial events listed under the same denomination of “genocide” to which humanity bore and still bears witness.
Argentina, Rwanda, Palestine, Serbia, Kurdistan, Burma… Only some of the places theatre of an enduring representation of the state of blindness we are to be responsible for.
First of all, Blindness wants to be an act of responsibility. A deep and concrete analysis, an active connection between immemorial episodes, in which words such as xenophobia, racism and indifference result as the common denominators of events that go beyond simple geographical areas and precise historical combinations.
It is from this kaleidoscopic human nature that the reflection on Blindness is born.
Kaleidoscopic in the sense that, at the base of these events, that are apparently far away from each other (in the geographical and motivational sense of the term) there are a few elements embedded in the same human nature, in which the infinite combinations with different places and situations have determined the creation of similar phenomena.
But the problem isn’t only what happens, but what lays at its origin.
It follows that, memory, read under this point of view, becomes responsibility of each of us, not only bound to one specific episode but part of our own human development, starting from our daily life, in which we can not limit ourselves to remembering.
The memory has to translate into a courageous action that sees past history as present history, the others’ history as our own, starting from awareness that it isn’t remembering a date that we can prevent the event from repeating itself.
Memory is built on the base of knowledge, it is therefore necessary to know and to let know, through visual and verbal documentation of the memory itself, investigating first of all its human nature and uncovering the modesty of emotions and of re-actions towards the world we belong to.
Create a photographical project that investigates on some immemorial events with the aim to re-build a “Blindness Map”.
To do this, the project is thought through a double action: on one hand there is a photographical investigation of the single events through the study of icons (related to places, objects and contexts) interpreted through a visual analysis.
On the other hand there is a collection of testimony material (video/recordings, written texts) through the stories of people who directly or indirectly lived that event.
Actual state of the project:
Bring Action 1 to a conclusion through the gathering of material. Once this is over the goal is to proceed to the development of the Blindness Map, through information about another immemorial event, searching for contacts and useful addresses that come before the photographical action, through the acquisition of testimonies.