Art and Design | European History
Description, Abstract, or Artist's Statement
I always found great interest in learning about the Holocaust and how it has affected society even to this day. Through my winter LSFY course “Ashes to Immortality” I got the opportunity to discover a greater empathy for those who suffered, lost their lives, and survived this historic event. I wanted to insure that my piece represented the importance of passing on experiences and knowledge of the Holocaust in hopes that a similar event will never happen again. In my piece, I painted the entrance of Auschwitz converted in red splatters to represent the lives lost. The concentration camp is surrounded by a light blue and white sponge painted background to show optimism during a dark time. Photographs are cut and pasted around the scene of Auschwitz because I did not think I could capture the true feeling or horrors of the Holocaust simply through my own art. I feel that the pictures allow the viewer to really see what was experienced and seen during this time. Lastly, there are two hands reaching across the painting towards each other. One is meant to represent those who struggled. This can be seen by the tattoo of numbers on the arm. This hand is passing on a flower to the other hand representing the youth and the future. On each of the flowers there are a few printed words such as “remember”, “history”, “empathy”, etc. I found each one of these words necessary when representing what the Holocaust should mean to society then, now, and in the future.
Augustana Digital Commons Citation
Mehnert, Abbigail. "Continued Remembrance" (2015). Geifman Prize in Holocaust Studies.