Lest We Forget’ is the title of a project by German photographer Luigi Toscano. Over several years he has been taking pictures of Holocaust survivors. It’s a race against time that has pushed Toscano to his emotional limits over and over.
Luigi Toscano has photographed over 400 survivors of the Shoah the world over and taken down their and their contemporaries’ testimony. The stories abound with suffering and cruelty. They hint at the terrifying inhumanity of the national-socialist regime in power in Germany at that time. Often, the photographer struggled to cope emotionally with what he heard. Even so, he resolved to interview as many survivors as he could and record their remembrances for posterity. Now, over 75 years after the liberation of the concentration camps, many of the eyewitnesses have passed away. Toscano’s larger-than-life portraits have been shown in international exhibitions, most recently at UNESCO headquarters in Paris. There, too, they had to be placed under strict security to protect them against anti-Semitic and right-wing extremist attacks. A Report by Robert Richter.