Today’s Organ Thing of The Day is a look back to a very powerful piece of art we encountered as part of the 2015 Chinese Open here in London, an installation piece by East London artist Rebecca Feiner, I woke up thinking about this piece this morning. Today, Monday 27th January is Holocaust Memorial Day here in the United Kingdom, today also marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz and today Holocaust survivors have returned to Auschwitz to lay wreaths to commemorate the 1.1 million people who died there during the Second World War. Ninety percent of those murdered at Auschwtiz-Birkenau were Jewish, Today marks Holocaust Memorial Day and 75 years since the mass murder camp was liberated by Soviet troops and 7,000 prisoners were freed (although almost half of these people would die as they were too ill, starving or exhausted to survive). Auschwitz wasn’t the only camp of course and the numbers, as awful as they are, really are hard to connect with..
I always found this piece by Rebecca Feiner to be very very powerful, I do wish I had some better photos, I tool these at the time, we were both taking part in the show together, a big group show in a multi-storey carpark in West London, Rebecca hadn’t made a big fuss about the piece, no big fanfare, she kind of quietly installed the piece, left it there for people to quietly read and then, like the rest of us artists, quietly took the piece away again – I guess the piece is stored in her studio now, I;d love to see it again We did cover it on these pages and remark on how powerful it was back in 2015.
If I have the story correct, Rebecca Feiner, an artist who currently lives and works in East London, had a grandmother who she was named after, Rebecca’s grandmother Rebecca Feiner also lived and worked in East London before the war, her family had a shop down by Petticoat Lane, Rebecca married and moved to Belgium to live with her husband and family in the 1930’s, you can probably guess the rest, Rebecca didn’t survive, one of the few British Jews who ended up in the death camps during the war.
Rebecca Feiner is a very active East London artist, she’s always smiling. Rebecca is an active part of the East London Community, and as the piece of art from 2015 says, Rebecca Feiner is still living and working and walking the streets of East London, Rebecca is an artist who “walks the same streets of East London”, her studio is in Tower Hamlets, she regularly exhibits and curates shows in East London, she does have a brilliant smile. I think of that piece of art quite a lot, I woke up thinking about it this morning. I wish we had better photos of the piece, it was a privilege to take part in that show and exhibit a piece of mine next to it, if I remember rightly Rebecca’s piece is called “Still Here”, it is hard to take in those numbers but it is very east to think of Rebecca Feiner today . (sw)
Click in an image to enlarge or to run the slide show…