Continuing our chronicles of Creative Week, on the 6th and 7th of August, the students got down to business during a contemporary art workshop at Hochschule Trier. Members of Moving.Lab Michal Wanke PhD, Professor Magda Hlawacz and Professor Robert Geisler of the University of Opole shared their knowledge and expertise in the areas of contemporary art and everyday life of the Europeans with the students. For contemporary art the students would later learn how to incorporate the ideas of contemporary artists and their experiences while living in Trier would offer perspective into the everyday lives of Europeans.
Continuing our quest about the history of Europe during Creative Week, our team of interns, some of our members and the University of Opole’s Summer University students visited the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe also known as the Holocaust Memorial. Walking in between the cold and uninviting slabs and descending into the depths of the memorial, the students were asked to describe their feelings and any thoughts aroused by being in the memorial. Some described the loneliness and panic that engulfed them as they went further into the memorial. They also pondered on the various interpretations of the monument and the significance of the memorial; what it means to the people of Berlin, Germany, Europe and the world at large.
A couple of our interns together with some of our members and University of Opole professors Magda Hlawacz PhD, Michal Wanke PhD and Robert Geisler PhD began Creative Week on the 5th of August 2019 with a tour of the Berlin Wall with the University of Opole’s Summer University students from Taiwan. Additionally two teachers from China’s Fujian Normal University Xiao Chuanfen and Ye Zhuangxin, National Chung Hsing University (NCHU)’s International Relations Officer Yu-Chun Liao took part in the events of the Creative Week and we received the support of Marek Korzeniowski PhD, the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Opole. We toured the East Side gallery and pondered on the history of Germany and how the Berlin Wall and its eventual fall impacted and set the course of events for the whole of Europe.
More posts to follow about Creative Week!!!
At Moving.lab one of our goals is to increase cultural interactions and to encourage the pursuit of knowledge, visiting museums and learning about history is one of the better ways to accomplish that goal. That’s why our partners at Opole University organised a trip for the Taiwanese students to the Central Museum of Prisoners of War in the beautiful town of Łambinowice, formerly known as Lamsdorf.
Upon arrival at the museum, the students watched a short documentary about the history of the camp and the museum. After that they met with Dr Anna Czerner who guided their tour. Before starting the tour, she asked them to identify signs of violence and reconciliation around the museum and the camp. This task will be helpful in the students’ next workshop about “Violence and reconciliation” in Opole. After that, Sebastian led the students on a tour of the museum, gave broad knowledge about the history of the camp and told stories that happened in the camp.
Then we started the second part of our tour, on bikes provided by the museum and rode to the historic cemetery. The Old POW Cemetery is even older than WWI and belonged to Germany until the end of the second WW. And that’s why it was designed as a classical German cemetery; close to nature. They were graves of soldiers of many different nationalities; British, French, Romanian, Russian… And each nation has its own memorial statue except Romania. Sebastian told us the meaning behind the statue named Niobe which was dedicated to Serbian soldiers and the families they left behind.
After looking for symbols of violence and reconciliation around the cemetery we headed for the camp itself. Although the camp has been mostly destroyed after WW2, they are few buildings remaining and reconstructed for the museum. The realities of the prisoners of war were described; what they ate, when and where they slept, what they did and how they coped with being prisoners of war.