Andreas Mühe, photograms from the series Gottlob und Anna, 2021 © Andreas Mühe
On the occasion of the 175th anniversary of the National Assembly in the Paulskirche in Frankfurt/Main, Galerie Anita Beckers presents for the first time the exhibition BRÜDER UND SCHWESTERN by photographer Andreas Mühe, with new works and works still in process.
Frankfurt and its Paulskirche, the cradle of democracy, become the test bed of German-German relations after 1945 in the cycle of works „Brothers and Sisters“. As is often the case in his artistic explorations, Andreas Mühe intertwines German history with the history of his own family by making the death of his great-grandparents in the cycle „Anna and Gottlob“ the starting point for his consideration of how we deal with victimhood and perpetration in our society.
45 ropes, which refer to the year of the end of the war in 1945, form the starting point for the consideration of a German-German history after 1945.
Mitpächter war ich eines Meters Todesstreifen
Bin ich wahr, wenn ich in der Vergangenheit rede?
Von vielem bin ich frei, in nichts von Schuld… *
*Richard Leising (1934 – 1997) german poet, from: „Auch ich“
Andreas Mühe, born in 1979, confesses to the deeds of his past, the eternal round of fellow travelers, confidants and complainers. Not only the joint death anniversary of the great-grandparents in April 1945, recorded on the gravestone, which was not in the cemetery, but in the field near the barn, framed by a plantation of fir trees – they had their own small cemetery – was a taboo, but also their possible execution by Soviet forced laborers or even soldiers of the Red Army in view of the approaching front and the subsequent refusal for the grandfather to be allowed to bury the bodies in the cemetery of the village. The family, first living in the Soviet occupation zone, then in the later GDR, kept silent about it.
My great-grandparents Anna and Gottlob Hahn, murdered together by Russians in 1945, were denied their final resting place in the cemetery in eastern Germany. The RAF terrorists Gudrun Ensslin, Andreas Baader and Jan-Carl Raspe, who were imprisoned in Stammheim, killed themselves on the night of October 18, 1977, and found a collective resting place in the Dornhalden Cemetery in Stuttgart. NSU terrorist Uwe Mundlos from Jena shoots his accomplice Uwe Böhnhardt after a bank robbery in Eisenach on November 4, 2011, sets fire to their joint hideout – a mobile home – and kills himself. The third member of this terrorist group, Beate Zschäpe, sets fire to the shared apartment in Zwickau, first tries to flee, then to turn herself in to be sentenced to life imprisonment in a five-year trial. The parents of the murderers have a hard time finding a grave for their children.