Aviv for Holocaust Survivors and Dorot "People, Not Numbers" (2013) 2:00 (U.S.A.)

 
 

Aviv for Holocaust Survivors and Dorot "People, Not Numbers" (2013) 2:00 (U.S.A.)

Simply because of age, time is running out for Holocaust survivors. For Holocaust Memorial Day, Saatchi and Saatchi Israel decided to push the envelope with a campaign that both worked to preserve the stories of remaining survivors, and make sure teenagers heard them.

They began by recording having the Holocaust survivors tell their stories and show their tattoos. They then created the an initiative on Holocaust Memorial Day that gave teenagers in Israel and abroad temporary tattoos of Holocaust survivors. The tattoos led to a corresponding survivor's story.

I can understand the debate, as on one level no one could (or perhaps should) ever approximate the horrors these survivors endured. However, in an age where we are either quickly forgetting or even using the Holocaust as a way to purposefully and cruelly promote tasteless art perhaps we all need the point driven home one more time: Holocaust survivors have that yolk around their head to this day, but it's not what makes them who they are. they are people with stories.

And above all it's not some remote group of people from long ago. Their numbers may lessen with the passing years but they're still here. And they are people. not numbers.

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I've recoiled at seeing tattooed numbers on arms recently. I've seen young people who have their birthdate on their arm, seemingly unaware. I get this creepy feeling in my skin just seeing the temporary tats... But this.... This is a really nice idea. Not only in that each survivor was interviewed and had the opportunity to tell their story, but also in forging solidarity with the younger generation and making it a digital museum so to speak. Well done Saatchi.

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