In November 2018 the commemoration week 1938.2018 Shalom Nachbar took place in Lockenhaus. 80 years after the annexation of Austria to National Socialist Germany, many commemoration ceremonities took place in Austria. In Lockenhaus, people remembered the Jewish families, who had to leave their home town in 1938.
Signs for memory. Visualization of Memory. Never forget.
A project team from Lockenhaus (Ruth Patzelt, DI Barbara Horvath, Mag. Gertraud Horvath and Mag. Denise Steiger) set this sign of remembrance in 2018. Lockenhaus has a Jewish history and it is important to make this Heritage visible. Our Jewish neighbours were expelled from Lockenhaus in 1938. Most of them were murdered in the Shoa and forgotten in Lockenhaus. Many people in Lockenhaus, especially young people, know nothing about it. Through the events and commemorations during the week in November 2018, this Jewish history became visible again and should remain visible and NEVER be forgotten.
„Heute leben nur mehr jene, die diese Zeit als Kinder und Jugendliche erlebt haben. Die Jahrzehnte des Schweigens machen es ihnen schwierig, über diesen Teil ihrer Erinnerungen zu sprechen. Doch darüber zu sprechen - und zu erinnern - bleibt notwendig, damit "Niemals vergessen" nicht zur Floskel wird. (Bernhard Blank, derStandard.at, 29.4.2015)
- The Shoah memorial in memory of the Lockenhauser victims of the Shoa (designed by DI Barbara Horvath in 2008) was restored and two names of victims were added. Mag. Peter Menasse, Dr. Gerhard Baumgartner and Paul Gulda spoke reminding words at the opening ceremony.They not only spoke about the Shoa, but also found clear words about the frightening development in our society. Mayor Mag. (FH) Christian Vlasich spoke about the importance of a good neighbourhood. DI Barbara Horvath mentioned the importance of the site of the Shoa memorial - near the former Jewish prayer house and next to the war memorial for the victims of the two world wars. "All mourners can commemorate their victims here." The touching highlight of the event was the prayer of the Jewish guests at the memorial. Two descendants of the Jewish family Stössel - Ja´acov and Yonit, grandchildren of Nathan Ignatz and Gittel/Käthe Stössel - who were expelled from Lockenhaus, had travelled from Israel to commemorate together with the people of Lockenhaus.
- The temporary art installation "Mezuzah", created by Ruth Patzelt and Barbara Horvath was set up on the main square of Lockenhaus in November 2018. This Art Action wanted to make visible the disappearance of the Jewish neighbours, the loss of their culture and their houses in Lockenhaus.
"80 Jahre nach den Reichspogromnächten vom 9. und 10. November 1938 soll das Kunstwerk der beiden Künstlerinnen Ruth Patzelt und Barbara Horvath einladen, an jene Menschen zu gedenken, die damals, quasi über Nacht, ihre Heimat und ihre Häuser verlassen mussten und viele von ihnen in den dramatischen Stunden, Tagen und Wochen danach auch ihr Leben verloren. Das Thema der Installation sind die offenen Türrahmen als Symbol für die fehlenden Häuser und Wohnungen, die fehlenden und verschwundenen „Zugänge“ zu den jüdischen Nachbarn. Auch die Mezuzot fehlen oder sind mit Gewalt herausgerissen. Steine am Boden, in Korrespondenz zum Mahnmal für die Lockenhauser Opfer der Shoa, benennen in hebräischer Schrift das Gedenkjahr. (aus Mensch und Nachbar)
- The "Mezuzah" was also the place of commemoration of the Reichspogromnacht, November 9th. The celebration "Silent Remembrance" was accompanied musically by the choir Musica Sacra Lockenhaus. Gloria Popp, a young woman from Lockenhaus read Gerty's letter, the touching document and last sign of life of a 16 year old girl from Lockenhaus who was murdered in Auschwitz. At the celebration Ruth Patzelt expressed her wish, that this memorial should also draw attention to refugees around the world today.
- Workshops in the schools, at the memorial and at the art installation "Mezuzah" gain attention of the students and teachers who took part creatively in the project with drawing lessons and lectures about the Shoa and Jewish culture.
- A film evening was dedicated to the Jewish actor Ludwig Stössel from Lockenhaus. Music students of the music school played film music.
- The booklet Mensch und Nachbar with collections of texts, poems and pictures was provided to all citizens of Lockenhaus.
The commemoration week has inspired many people to reflect, some people started a polemic discussion. The commemorative speech of Andre Heller on March 10th 2018 in the Hofburg in Vienna gave the impetus to start the memorial project 1938.2018 Shalom.Nachbar in Lockenhaus.
„Ihr müsst reden mit den Leuten, mit allen!“ (André Heller) "You have to talk to people, to everybody!" (André Heller)