The DenkNadel - gazed at, (sometimes) controversial, noticed and looked after

The artist: Sophie Hollmann was born in Erfurt in 1986; educated at the Walter-Gropius-School in Erfurt, Technical College for Design; studied at Anhalt University of Applied Sciences; 2009 Master of Arts in Integrated Design.

The Art Commission and Cultural Board of the Erfurt Municipal Council were consulted. A competition, directed at students and pupils, did not receive the response expected.

A Call for proposals in an open artistic competition in summer 2008 followed. There was an exhibition of the 10 submissions on the 70th anniversary of the November pogroms in the premises of the soon to be opened Museum of the Old Synagogue Erfurt. The jury chose the three best contributions, the suggestion “Zeichensetzung” (“Leaving a mark”) won the first prize.

9 November 2009 was a special day for the working group with the first four “pinpricks” in our town: Five names, four places – a moving day, relatives of those remembered by the DenkNadeln arrived from France, Israel, Bavaria and laid down flowers, a large press coverage, and joy for the members of the working group.
On 9 November 2013 the ninth and, for the time being, last DenkNadel for Herta Simon in No. 5 Lutherstraße was erected.

The city council with mayor Andreas Bausewein supports the project:

  • financially, paying for the foundations for the memorials and publicity for the project
  • organisationally
  • by providing manpower for the network "Jüdisches Leben Erfurt" (“Jewish Life Erfurt”) and supporting research projects into deported and murdered Jews from Erfurt

The overall project DenkNadel is embedded in the network "Jewish Life Erfurt".

Accompanying measures are:

  • Awareness and imparting activities are indispensable in order to bring names, places, and fates to speak.
  • Activities, remembrance days and school projects are desired.
  • The associated publicity was primarily intended to support the work in schools.