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Haunting Gas Chamber Replica Remembers the Holocausts Horrors

Submitted by: Odio @ 03:41 AM | Wednesday, June 8, 2016 | (url: http://www.wired....)

DONT TURN AWAY: A team of architectural historians rebuilt a Nazi gas chamber.

The stark-white plaster casts of workon display at the Venice Architectural Biennale as The Evidence Roomdoes more than just make visitors uncomfortable (though it does that, too). In responding to the Biennales theme, Reporting from the Front, the reconstruction both remembers the Holocaust and refuses to let its literal architects escape without blame.

The exhibit actually grew out of a court case. In 1996, Holocaust denier David Irving sued writer and historian Deborah Lipstadt and her publisher Penguin Books for libel. Lipstadts 1994 book Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory featured Irvings revisionist interpretation of the era. In order to fight Irvings lawsuit, Lipstadt had to prove that the Holocaust did, indeed, happen. The court called on Robert Jan van Pelt, architectural historian at the University of Waterloo. His job, on the stand, was to prove the genocidal intent of concentration camps. He had the proof: the architects who built the crematoriums left behind blueprints and letters.
Van Pelt, along with other professors and students from the University of Waterloo, used that evidence to reconstruct full-scale replicas of a gas column, a gas door, and a gas-tight hatch. Theyre nightmarish to look atbut looking, and acknowledging, is the whole point. Its a perfect example of the unflinching tone Alejandro Aravena, the latest winner of architectures prestigious Pritzker Prize and the director of this years Biennale, is urging architects to adopt in facing difficult issues.

It is a profound experience for all of us, said van Pelt in a statement, and, in design terms, a radical, unprecedented investigation into the possibility to represent something unrepresentable: the architectural evidence of a factory of death.


Clinton will censor your video games when president.

Submitted by: Shadow13 @ 12:20 PM | Sunday, December 23, 2007 | (url: http://games.slas...)

Quote: "When I am president, I will work to protect children from inappropriate video game content." Politically, this puts her in company with Republican Mitt Romney on the subject of game censorship. Her fellow Democrats are content to let the industry self-regulate.