Natasha Goldman presents the 2019 Berger Family Holocaust Lecture. East and West Germany worked through Holocaust memory in the form of public memorials, in different ways. While East Germany favored socialist realist public sculptures, some artists by the late 1950s, incorporated elements of the pre-war avant-garde in their work—but not without controversy. Meanwhile, in the West, a “safe” approach to public sculpture meant turning to an acceptable modern aesthetic that tended to avoid direct reference to Jews or to the Holocaust. An investigation of the commissions of two memorials, Will Lammert’s 1957 design for the Ravensbruck memorial and the Gerson Fehrenbach’s 1963 memorial to a destroyed synagogue in West Berlin, reveal complexities that enrich our understanding of post-war Holocaust memory in both countries. Hosted by the Jewish Studies Program.
Contact: Teresa Van Deventer, firstname.lastname@example.org