Saturday, December 19, 2015

Wall of Rememberance: Berlin Wall Memorial

Close-up from Berlin Wall Memorial

Framed in a rusty, steel shadowbox are the black and white portraits of people who lost their lives attempting to cross the wall from East to West Germany. Their names, birth and death dates are indelibly etched into the steel beneath each recessed compartment. The portraits are covered in glass in which you can view your own reflection, as if to ask us to put ourselves in their place. Roses had been placed above each name in a gesture of remembrance. Some compartments had only names and dates while others were covered with metal plates as it is inevitable more victims will be added as their stories are discovered. While 130 victims are present on the wall I moved in close to better capture each likeness.

This photo was one of my entries to the 2015 ASMPhilly Focus book. This year's theme was “Faces.” When I made the image I couldn't help but wonder who these people were and after learning it would be published, I felt obligated to do some research. Here are some of their stories. Keep them in mind whenever you hear politicians talk about building Walls.