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Elements after crimes, 44.86°N 16.77°E | Zabou Carrière
December 2013, the excavations are completed in the mass grave of Tomašica in Republika Srpska. They started in September following the statements of a Serb witness. Twenty years later, he had indicated the place where non-Serbs were dumped in a dug pit in 1992 to hide the bodies during the Bosnian war. In 1993, the local population complained about the smells, the ones who had buried the bodies had unearthed a part to hide them in a secondary mass grave, Jakarina Kosa, about ten kilometers away.
Some 600 people were buried in Tomašica, making it the largest mass grave discovered in Europe since the Second World War.
Zabou Carrière had followed the excavations in the autumn and decided to come to Tomašica a few months later. The photographs of Elements After Crimes, 44.86 ° N 16.77 ° E show water, mud, stones, plants, all elements of the nature of an apparent banality. Their scale is not clearly noticeable, images without perspective. The shots are taken looking downwards towards the ground. Rather than landscapes, they are surfaces that are shown, the very ones that had to be excavated to get rid of the remains of the dead that had been sought for twenty years.
The photographs suggest rather than show the horror.
An image points to a scarred sky, indecisive between sun and clouds. The weather is nice and warm in this region too.
Vegetation has covered the returned earth, water has filled the pits, the excavators in charge of their extraction no longer cover the songs of the birds. The landscape was modified by the interventions of man and ended up revealing his secrets. The crime scene exists in the collective memory and yet much more is not visible.
Raphael Enthoven, resuming a text by Vladimir Jankélévitch, questions the fact that in Auschwitz “the grass starts growing again every year and the birds sing there”. He adds: “We can not but be indignant that life goes on and we can not help but rejoice.”
At the entrance to the Pantheon of Simone Veil and her husband Antoine, it was broadcast the recording of Dawn, Birkenau, June 17, 2018, 5 am. There is the song of birds.
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