German Artist Shames Selfie Takers at Berlin’s Holocaust Memorial
A German artist, seeing the rise in selfie culture at the Berlin Holocaust memorial, has photoshopped some of the pictures to give them a new perspective.
Shahak Shapira, who reportedly lost half of his family in the Holocaust, was disgusted with narcissistic selfies people were posting from the memorial, including yoga poses and even one man sarcastically commenting that he was jumping on dead Jews. In order to give the selfies better context, Shapira photoshopped twelve pictures he found, including the people into actual pictures of the horrors inflicted at the camps.
Shapira took all of the pictures, both the originals and his revamped pictures, and posted them to the website titled "Yolocaust", calling out selfie culture in places where it doesn't belong. Shapira noted that in the week the site was active, it was viewed by 2.5 million people, including those from the pictures,
The crazy thing is that the project actually reached all 12 people who’s selfies were presented. Almost all of them understood the message, apologized and decided to remove their selfies from their personal Facebook and Instagram profiles. Aside from that I also received tons of great feedback from Holocaust researchers, people who used to work at the memorial, folks who lost their family during the Holocaust, teachers who wanted to use the project for school lessons, and evil people who sent photos of their friends and family for me to photoshop.
Shapira agreed to take down the photos if the subjects emailed him a request at an email address that started with "undouche.me". To his surprise, one of the most heartfelt responses was from the guy who captioned his picture "Jumping on Dead Jews @ Holocaust Memorial",
I am the guy that inspired you to make Yolocaust, so I've read at least. I am the "jumping on de..." I cant even write it, kind of sick of looking at it. I didn't mean to offend anyone. Now I just keep seeing my words in the headlines.
I have seen what kind of impact those words have and it's crazy and it's not what I wanted (…)
The photo was meant for my friends as a joke. I am known to make out of line jokes, stupid jokes, sarcastic jokes. And they get it. If you knew me you would too. But when it gets shared, and comes to strangers who have no idea who I am, they just see someone disrespecting something important to someone else or them.
That was not my intention. And I am sorry. I truly am.
With that in mind, I would like to be undouched.
P.S. Oh, and if you could explain to BBC, Haaretz and aaaaallll the other blogs, news stations etc. etc. that I f***ed up, that'd be great.