In short

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PHOTO OF THE DAY
Luciana Pampalone, Graflex, 2012 © Luciana Pampalone
Luciana Pampalone, Graflex, 2012 © Luciana Pampalone

During World War II, over 11,000 Jewish children were deported from France to Auschwitz and other Nazi death camps in convoys that rolled until August 18, 1944, the day Paris was liberated. As the consequence of anti-Semitism, a disbelief in human equality, these children were among more than 75,000 French Jews deported under the Nazi plan for the “Final Solution to the Jewish question.” Of those French Jews transported, only 2,564 survived the Shoah. Most of the youths were arrested by the French gendarmes on orders of the Vichy government and turned over to the Germans for deportation. At most 300 of these Jewish children survived.

Ghosts: French Holocaust Children is a three-dimensional installation that acts as an ethereal commemoration to the children’s abbreviated lives. This project is based on documents and photographs collected by author, lawyer, and Nazi-hunter Serge Klarsfeld, which I have reinterpreted through two- and three-dimensional photographic representations to convey a haunting sense of lost human possibilities. This 600 plus expressionist portrait anthology generates a composite of an archive database, historical reference, and media narrative. It post-documentary approach blends outer and inner realities, constructing stories that examine the extreme boundaries of human behavior regarding identity, loss, memory, and racism.

Robert Hirsch