33 x 6 x 64
About the Piece:
"During the 12-year Nazi regime over to 100,000 men were identified as homosexual. Tens of thousands were arrested, under German Criminal Code “Paragraph 175” and send to concentration camps, where they were usually put to forced labor under the cruelest conditions… starvation, exposure to the elements and brutal treatment… most died within a year. Witnesses have said that gay prisoners, marked with a pink triangle, were used for target practice by the guards. After the allied forces “liberated” the camps, men marked with the pink triangle, rather than being freed, were sent to prison or chemically castrated because homosexuality remained illegal.
On Wednesday, August 4th, 2011 Rudolf Brazda, the last known surviving man to wear the pink triangle, died at the age of 98. He was very likely the last victim and the last witness to the most extreme instance of state-sponsored homophobia in the 20th century.
While researching Mr. Brazda, I stumbled across records of others who were subjected to the same fate. A few of them caught my attention because, rather than listing a date of death or release, their destiny is unknown. Kurt Bruessow, the man portrayed in this piece, was one such man. For me, his unknown fate raises more questions than answers.
Rudolf Brazda was quoted as saying: “I have known it all, from the basest repression to the grand emancipation of today.”
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