Wednesday, September 19, 2012

forgotten memorials

An absolutely stunning photo documentary on neglected WWII memorials built in the 60s & 70s in eastern Europe.  The daring feats of structural and formal exercise evoke some raw emotions and the sheer magnitude of scale are enough to make one pause and stare endlessly...

 ‘During the 1960s and 70s, thousands of monuments commemorating the Second World War – called ‘Spomeniks’ – were built throughout the former Yugoslavia; striking monumental sculptures, with an angular geometry echoing the shapes of flowers, crystals, and macro-views of viruses or DNA. In the 1980s the Spomeniks still attracted millions of visitors from the Eastern bloc; today they are largely neglected and unknown, their symbolism lost and unwanted. Antwerp-based photographer Jan Kempenaers travelled the Balkans photographing these eerie objects, presented in this book as a powerful typological series. The beauty and mystery of the isolated, crumbling Spomeniks informs Kempenaer’s enquiry into memory, found beauty, and whether former monuments can function as pure sculpture.’

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