Artist Diana Kurz was published in the French magazine ZO, Magazine d’Art Contemporain. This illustrated article has three images and talks about anti-semitism, the Holocaust, and her paintings. It is in French and there is an English translation.
THE WEATHER ON THE DAY OF THE MASSACRE
How should it be said? What color is the summer sky above the entrance to Auschwitz or Dachau? What sound does the river make under the walls of the ghetto?
In 1938, at the time of the Anschluss (annexation of Austria by the 3rd Reich), Diana Kurz’s parents left Vienna. During these weeks, the Gestapo arrested between 3,500 and 4,800 Jews to send them to camps. The scenario becomes clearer, like a sort of repetition of the promised monstrosity. In one of his interventions, Eichmann promises ruthless repression. The synagogues are devastated, the shops burned and the cemeteries desecrated.
Diana Kurz was two years old. From 1989 to 2003, she searched family albums for portraits of those who disappeared. Not all of them were able to leave Austria. One night, one morning, the Gestapo started filling up their trucks. To the disappeared, to the swallowed up, to the humiliated, Diana Kurz opens her painting. A man surrounded by his children, a wise little girl looking at a picture book, a mother, a sister, in a light dress, so light. What light was there in this room the day before and the day of the tragedy, when the executioners raise the whip, when the mouth of the oven is open? Do the birds sing, and the river too and the pale clouds…
Diana Kurz paints the immense drama, in this Austria which applauds with both hands and throws stones in the window, and on the faces, spits its hatred. What nice weather was it? “I have often been struck by the irony that terrible and unspeakable things happen when the sky is blue, the weather is fine, the birds are singing, etc