Friday, March 7, 2014

Sculpture and Norway's New Memorial

 " after Auschwitz is barbaric." 

It is the lack of critical thinking behind most memorials that turns good intentions into banal, sentimental kitsch. Bombastic sculpture trivializes and adds insult to injury.

Swedish artist Jonas Dahlberg was selected as the artist to create a memorial to the 87 people murdered by a right wing extremist in 2011. His proposal makes the loss of so many young lives hauntingly visible.

Photos © Jonas Dahlberg Studio
The names of those who died are cut into the opposite wall. Untouchable. The void is not a great distance but still a chasm between the living and the dead. The water is both itself and a powerful metaphor of the River Styx and the passing of time.

I think it would be just as powerful using concrete, without the fancy granite. The high polish and variations of color in the stone make reading any inscription more difficult.

1 comment:

Tammy P said...

The void is powerful, it speaks volumes with no need for words. It is an amazing representation of loss.