In addition to a critical analysis of landscape in Shoah, and because I consider that memory and place are not something that written language can, by itself, adequately express, my research outputs include the development and presentation of two creative projects, that I have entitled LANDMARKS and Dachau Brick. These pieces document both my visits and material relationship to a number of Holocaust-related sites in Poland and Germany. In part as deference to the subject itself, and in part to discover what could come from documenting these spaces in ritual detail and from multiple viewpoints aimed to displace my pre-existing understanding of these sites, my methodology for both filming and representing these spaces took on a formalized character.For this piece, I filmed 360-degree panoramas at 12 separate Holocaust-related memorial sites throughout Germany, ending production at the site of the Hadamar psychiatric hospital.
Dachau Brick (in progress) is a 16mm film installation that explores Holocaust-related sites in Germany, and documents my attempt to return a disintegrating brick to the Dachau crematorium.
Through examining the brick as artifact, I also captured multiple images of its crumbling surface using a scanning electron microscope at 10,000x magnification.
- Still from Dachau Brick. Scanning electron microscope image of brick. Dachau, Germany and Reading, UK (2014).
The panoramas, the documented attempt at returning the brick, and the microscopy images will be digitally rear-projected from beneath a translucent Plexiglas stage, such that the floor effectively becomes a light box. In order to see the moving collage of projections, viewers will stand over the images and look downwards, as if to stare at the ground.
Like LANDMARKS, Dachau Brick is a visual response to the representation of landscape in Shoah, though all three works maintain their own relationships to traumatic space, and its inability to be fully captured.
- Still from Dachau Brick. Sand from Normandy Beach. Normandy, France and Reading, UK (2014).