Mise à jour
19 janvier 2010
Tel Aviv
Ninth November Night
The Installation by Gottfried Helnwein in memory of "Kristallnacht" 1938, is for the first time presented in Israel.
The artist erected this art-installation originally in fall 1988 in the city of Cologne in Germany, on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the pogrom-night of November 9, 1938. The Installation was placed between the Cologne Cathedral and the Ludwig Museum, alongside the railroad track of the central station. It was entirely financed by the artist. A hundred meter long wall of pictures with large images of children's faces, in a seemingly endless row, as if made to line up to be "selected". With the faces of christian, jewish and handicapped children, that lived in Germany in 1988. In the second night after the opening, unknown people cut all the throats of the children on the pictures. For the first time this memorial is now presented in Israel and for that occasion the artist included faces of children living in Israel in 2010.
Selektion - Neunter November Nacht (Ninth November Night)
2010, installation, Tel Aviv, Israel
The most powerful images that deal with Nazism and Holocaust themes are by Anselm Kiefer and Gottfried Helnwein.
The work of both artists are informed by the personal experience of growing up in post-war German speaking countries...
William Burroughs said that the American revolution begins in books and music,
and political operatives implement the changes after the fact.
To this maybe we can add art.
And Helnwein's art might have the capacity to instigate change by piercing the veil of political correctness
to recapture the primitive gesture inherent in art.
Jewish Journal, Los Angeles
Mitchell Waxman
Ninth November Night
Installation, 1988, 400 x 6000 cm / 157 x 2362'', between Ludwig Museum and Cologne Cathedral, Cologne, each panel 370 x 250 cm, 146 x 98"
Again and again, Helnwein painted children in brutal, violent settings. He has used Chris tian iconography to depict Nazi officers, and juxtaposed rampaging soldiers with Images of childhood innocence. Visceral reactions come with the territory: one Installation in Cologne was physically attacked by neo Nazis. And yet, he says, he does not set out to shock. "Shock is a useless effect," he says. "Somebody in shock is completely useless. I want to make somebody think".
The Sunday Time, UK, Gerry McCarthy
Selektion - Neunter November Nacht (Ninth November Night)
Installation, Kulturbrauerei, Berlin, 1996
Ninth November Night
Installation, 1988, 400 x 6000 cm / 157 x 2362'', between Ludwig Museum and Cologne Cathedral, Cologne, each panel 370 x 250 cm, 146 x 98 inch
An extremely impressive work "Selection- Ninth November Night", made in 1988, consisted of a series of uniform, huge images of children's faces, stretching from Cologne's Ludwig Museum to its cathedral. The subtitle, (Ninth November Night), gave the clue to the event the work marked - the start of the Holocaust on Reichskristallnacht, November 9, 1938.
In presenting people with a series of entirely neutral, if rather beautiful, pictures of innocence and implicitly pointing out that just such innocents were sorted and selected for extermination, Helnwein was resurrecting an aspect of the past that most Germans and, perhaps even more so, Austrians, have preferred to forget.
It certainly annoyed someone to the extent that they came and vandalised it, symbolically cutting the throats of some of the images. Selection shares with Helnwein's more sensational work a desire to prod us into thought about our own attitudes and roles.
The real horror, as his work reiterates, is indifference and complacency.
The Irish Times, Aidan Dunne
The presentation in Israel was possible with the generous support of:
The Austrian Cultural Forum Tel Aviv
Trevision Visual Communication Group
Friedman-Benda Gallery, New York
The Israeli Opera
NINTH NOVEMBER NIGHT has been shown at
Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany, 1988
Musee'De L'Elysee Lausanne, Switzerland, 1990
Minoriten Church, Museum of Lower Austria, Krems, Austria 1991
City center of Heilbronn, Germany, 1992
Museum St. Ingbert, Albert Weisgerber Stiftung, Saarbrücken, Germany, 1993
Ludwig Institut, Schloss Oberhausen, Germany, 1995
Kulturbrauerei, Berlin, Germany, 1996
Museum of Fine Art, Otaru, Japan, 1996
The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia, 1997
City of Kilkenny, Ireland, 2001
Museum of Tolerance/Simon Wiesenthal Center Los Angeles, 2003
Tel Aviv, Israel, 2010
THE ART OF HUMANITY by Jonathon Keats
Museum of Tolerance, Simon Wiesenthal Center, Los Angeles, 09. November 2003
Documentary "Ninth November Night" , Children and the Holocaust in the Art of Gottfried Helnwein
Council of the City of Philadelphia
City Council Resolution
16. November 2006
Ninth November Night
Installation, 2010

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