new-york

Marcel Odenbach, Im Kreises drehen (Turning Circles), 2009, still from a color video, 15 minutes 50 seconds. Anton Kern Gallery.

Marcel Odenbach

Anton Kern Gallery/Kimmerich

Marcel Odenbach, Im Kreises drehen (Turning Circles), 2009, still from a color video, 15 minutes 50 seconds. Anton Kern Gallery.

After beginning apparently sunnily with two teenage boys horsing around in a field, Marcel Odenbach’s Im Kreises drehen (Turning Circles), 2009, quite quickly changes mood. The rest of the sixteen-minute video is a study of Majdanek, the death camp in Lublin, Poland, where more than seventy thousand people were killed by the Nazis during World War II. More particularly, it is a study of a Holocaust monument built at Majdanek in 1969; more particularly still, it is a study of a mausoleum, for the monument, designed by Wiktor Tolkin, takes the form of a giant marble bowl, the repository for a large mound of ash, with fragments of bone, left behind when the camp was vacated. This concave bowl is mirrored by a convex roof above it, a massive shallow dome supported by what seem like too few pillars. Symbolically and surely actually, to pass beneath this dome must be to feel a large

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