The Mauthausen Showers,
Accusations of “extraordinary bad taste” were levelled Sunday after details emerged of an Austrian designer snapping nude photos at a former Nazi concentration camp.
Gudrun Geiblinger, an up-and-coming poster designer, used the memorial site at the former Mauthausen death camp as backdrop for nude photos of herself, the news magazine Profil wrote in its latest edition.
“Extraordinary bad taste” – Nazi camp site in nude photos
I think I would have less of an objection if the works were politically motivated or used the location as part of a ‘story,’ but as it appears to have been chosen purely for it’s look and how she would look next to it, it seems a pretty cheap reason to degrade the location of such atrocities. It’s interesting that this is being raised about ten years after the photos were taken, it makes me wonder if it is a cheap attempt at publicity and controversy.
I have visited Mauthausen, on a field trip with my school. the site has become a memorial with a museum dedicated to the victims of the Holocaust. Mauthausen is particularly known for the appalling medical experiments conducted under the guise of furthering the ‘master race.’ Mauthausen had a palpable feel to it that left none in our group unaffected.
It is stories like this that I believe hinder the furtherance of nude art. I do not know if Geiblinger took these photos for shock value, to create controversy or purely as a ‘thought experiment’ but I do agree that her taste was questionable. I am not opposed to the concept as much as the way it was conducted. there are some very striking and poignant nude pieces that highlight the atrocities of the holocaust. Looking at Geiblinger’s website, she has several pieces which seem to celebrate and popularize war and I wonder if her “provocative” poses might be more of the same.