Memorial in Sachsenhausen

This place is a graveyard, but hardly anyone who comes to fish in the former harbour or cycle along the part of the Berlin-Copenhagen Bikeway that runs along the opposite bank of the Hohenzollern ­Canal knows anything about its history. As of 20 April, however, this is no longer the case. A memorial for the ­Lager Klinkerwerk (Brickworks Camp) designed by Dörte Eggert-Heerdegen and Kamel Louafi was inaugurated in time for the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp. Until 1945 thousands were murdered here; were worked to death during the production and shipping of bricks for Hitler’s Germania project.


The result is a quiet place that draws the observer in and provides information without ­attempting to transfer the ­unimaginable cruelty that ­occurred here into metaphors, thus simply allowing visitors to reflect on what happened. And although Corten steel has been used for other memorials as well, it fits this site perfectly because it is here that cranes were used to load bricks onto ships. It is an elegant detail that both of the heavy steel walls do not rise out of the ground, but from the far side of the quay wall, as if out of the water.

Photos: laview

Read the full article in Topos 91 – Urban Projects, Squares and Promenades