SOURCE: Marc Dennis Artist
NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - May 26, 2014) - Jewish poet and Holocaust survivor Herman Taube once said, "We die twice... once when we pass from this world and once when we are forgotten." With this quote in mind, artist, Marc Dennis and Israeli film director, Liron Unreich are currently working on a massive video installation project that records the memories of Holocaust survivors, to make sure that the tragic events of the past are not just a chapter in history books or a storyline for Hollywood movies, but that those who survived will not be forgotten.
The installation will mark the debut of Dennis and Unreich's collaborative and ongoing project Mirrors, a six channel video installation based on interviews of six Holocaust survivors conducted by Dennis and filmed by Unreich. For this piece, the artists assembled a varied list of six living survivors to portray by traveling to their homes and interviewing the subjects. The resulting films are powerful and complex, going beyond individual story telling to examine the multi-faceted and ever-changing complexity of how the self and the cultural and social implications of the holocaust, is perceived and presented to the world.
Utilizing installation and film and emanating from the history of portraiture Mirrors is an unprecedented artistic approach to the conventions of Holocaust discourse by presenting individual vignettes that together create a layered portrait of the generation of survivors. The exhibition includes reoccurring motifs of strength, optimism, and chance while investigating themes such as transformation, faith, and memory within the realm of an extraordinary event.
Dennis and Unreich in collaboration with The Ripple Project have already interviewed and edited material of three of the six survivors, recording their stories, collecting their memories, emotions and experiences, shaped through the insufferable cruelty they witnessed. The survivors have opened their doors to Marc and Liron and welcoming them into their homes for days at a time, creating an intimate and personal background for the interviews and allowing a very truthful look into their lives. The interviews are stories by people who have lost their families and friends, people who not only survived, but lived.
The videos reflect every little detail and emotion, establishing a powerful and meaningful connection through the narrative, creating a forum for reflection, discovery, education, participation, interpersonal connection and social conscience of survival.
"Mirrors is a monument for the living, a remembrance for those who will soon be taken by time, and a memorial to those who perished. Our project recognizes that we are at a crossroads of history, one at which the lives of those who are still with us must be captured, contextualized and reflected for future generations whose gaze has yet to look into this mirror with the dignity of respect for those who not only survived, but lived," explains Dennis.
Marc Dennis is a New York-based artist, known for his hyper-realistic paintings that display subjects of contemporary American culture. In addition to being an artist, Marc is also a full-time tenured professor of art at Elmira College in the Southern Tier of upstate NY, and an independent Holocaust scholar on the subject of clandestine art made by prisoners inside the Nazi concentration camps. Through genealogical research by a distant cousin in Jerusalem, he learned recently that his own family was directly affected by the Holocaust in that 24 fourth and fifth cousins on his grandmother's side were Auschwitz - Birkenau victims. This personal connection to his scholarly activities has contributed to the special importance for the concept for "Mirrors."
The project is ongoing and being funded entirely through private donations. To view the trailer please go to the Mirrors website: http://www.therippleproject.com/projects/mirrors-2/
Marc Dennis website: http://www.marcdennis.com