Poland probes artist's claim he used Holocaust ash - New York News

Poland probes artist's claim he used Holocaust ash

Posted: Updated:

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Polish prosecutors are investigating a Swedish artist's claim that he used the ashes of Holocaust victims to make a painting, an act that could carry a prison term.

The artist, Carl Michael von Hausswolff, wrote on the website of a gallery in Lund, Sweden, last year that he made a painting using ashes that he took from crematorium furnaces in Majdanek, a former Nazi German death camp located in eastern Poland, on a visit there in 1989.

Spokeswoman Beata Syk-Jankowska said Tuesday that local prosecutors have opened an investigation to check whether there is truth to the artist's claim. She said there is no evidence and prosecutors are acting on media reports. Swedish investigators will be asked for assistance in gathering evidence, she said.

It could be difficult, even impossible, to determine whether von Hausswolff is telling the truth or staging a publicity stunt. If he did actually use the ashes, it would likely be extremely offensive to Holocaust survivors and many others. He also could be charged in Poland with desecrating human ashes or a resting place and face up to eight years in prison.

In 1989, there were still some human ashes remaining in furnaces from World War II from the burning of the Nazi's victims. Removing any ash would be a crime, but there were no security cameras on the site at the time to register such an action, Agnieszka Kowalczyk, a spokeswoman for the museum at the site, told The Associated Press.

The AP has made multiple attempts to get comment from the artist's gallery, but in one case the owner refused comment and on Tuesday no one answered the phone. The exhibition closed in December in reaction to the scandal involving the painting, which Polish media have described as small with just brown and gray lines.

Between 1941 and 1944, some 150,000 people were held at the Majdanek camp. An estimated 80,000 of them died, most of whom were Jewish.

 

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Arrest made in attack of mother, children

    Arrest made in attack of mother, children

    Friday, August 29 2014 6:18 AM EDT2014-08-29 10:18:52 GMT
    The NYPD arrested a suspect in the attempted sexual assault of a mother in front of her three children.  Police say they busted Pedro Vargas, 48, of Yonkers on Thursday.  Chilling surveillance video released by cops showed a  man pretending to be a livery cab driver, pulling the woman out of a car, elbowing her five-year-old child in the face and tossing her three-year-old child onto a sidewalk in Queens.
    The NYPD arrested a suspect in the attempted sexual assault of a mother in front of her three children.  Police say they busted Pedro Vargas, 48, of Yonkers on Thursday.  Chilling surveillance video released by cops showed a  man pretending to be a livery cab driver, pulling the woman out of a car, elbowing her five-year-old child in the face and tossing her three-year-old child onto a sidewalk in Queens.
  • 'Resting comfortably'

    Joan Rivers rushed to NYC hospital

    Joan Rivers rushed to NYC hospital

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:58 AM EDT2014-08-29 09:58:52 GMT
    Hollywood legend Joan Rivers, 81, remains in critical but stable condition at The Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan. The comedian and TV host was undergoing an outpatient procedure at a clinic on the Upper East Side on Thursday when she went into cardiac arrest and was rushed to the hospital. Her daughter, Melissa Rivers, issued a statement saying her mother was "resting comfortably."

    Hollywood legend Joan Rivers, 81, remains in critical but stable condition at The Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan. The comedian and TV host was undergoing an outpatient procedure at a clinic on the Upper East Side on Thursday when she went into cardiac arrest and was rushed to the hospital. Her daughter, Melissa Rivers, issued a statement saying her mother was "resting comfortably."

  • Mayor pushes back pre-k concerns

    Mayor pushes back pre-k concerns

    Thursday, August 28 2014 10:16 PM EDT2014-08-29 02:16:46 GMT
    Mayor Bill de Blasio, educators and city leaders gathered at p.s. 307 in Brooklyn on Thursday to talk with pride about more than 50,000 kids who have enrolled in pre-kindergarten. Universal full-day pre-k was a platform of his campaign when he ran for mayor.Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina also feels the pre-k program is ready for launch.
    Mayor Bill de Blasio, educators and city leaders gathered at p.s. 307 in Brooklyn on Thursday to talk with pride about more than 50,000 kids who have enrolled in pre-kindergarten. Universal full-day pre-k was a platform of his campaign when he ran for mayor.Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina also feels the pre-k program is ready for launch.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices