I offer you the birds / I offer you the birds

Article publié le 11 April 2021

Audiovisual installation by Marta Marín-Dòmine

Until May 2, 2021

An artistic proposal conceived as a gesture of recognition for one of the perceptions shared by many survivors of the Nazi camps: never having seen a bird fly over the fields.

The installation, in addition to being a symbolic offering, also wants to show that any act of memory is a failed attempt to recover an event as it was experienced by its protagonists – victims and executioners.

The installation uses the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp as a reference to highlight the contrast between what is perceived on a daily basis and its distortion in a situation of extreme political violence. Birkenau was both a concentration camp for prisoners for political, religious, sexual and social reasons, and an extermination camp for European Jews, Sinti and Roma. Birkenau was also a vast birch forest which later served to hide the gas chambers and crematoria from view. In 1940, the ornithologist Günther Niethammer, SS, then enlisted in the Waffen-SS, obtained a license to study the birds of the region. He cataloged 127 birds.

The installation invites visitors to take a short tour of the visual and sound landscape of the countryside as can be seen today from images filmed in Birkenau and listening to a sound piece made with sounds and songs of the 127 birds.