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20.09.2017

History hidden in a photograph – educational activities for the prisoners of Opole Lubelskie Prison

As part of cooperation between the State Museum at Majdanek and Lublin Regional Inspectorate of the Prison Service, on the 15th of September in Opole Lubelskie Prison first educational workshops for prisoners were held. The aim of joint programme of museum workers and prison service is to form proper moral and social attitude through teaching the history of Majdanek.

Almost 30 prisoners took part in educational activities based on the exhibition called “Majdanek in Edward Hartwig’s photography”. The workshops began with a screening of the documentary called “Majdanek. Concentration camp in Lublin”. A historical narrative about former concentration camp at Majdanek was developed on the basis of black and white photographs taken at the Museum by Edward Hartwig. The artist’s works of art made the participants ask many questions concerning the past and a reflection in respect of contemporary times.

The exhibition of Edward Hartwig’s works, one of the most famous Polish photographer, consists of 17 photos, 14 of which come from the 1950s and 1960s and 3 of them were taken after 1969, probably in the 1970s. Apart from artistic values, such as typical of Hartwig building the mood by means of light or interesting perspectives, photos coming from the earlier period have a significant documentary value. They show Majdanek as a place which was once completely different and which few people remember. Symbolic meaning of the exhibition is to draw attention to the need of remembrance about what has happened during the German occupation. The prisoners in Opole Lubelskie have a possibility to see the exhibition from the 1st of September.

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