In a private apartment near an old synagogue in Berlin’s gentrified Prenzlauer Berg suburb, about two dozen Israelis and Germans gathered Wednesday to remember the biggest genocide the modern world has ever seen.
But this memorial, held at the beginning of Holocaust Remembrance Day, was unlike the many others that have taken place since the Nazi extermination of European Jews was finally halted with the end of World War II. The event was designed to be more personal, more intimate and more expressive than a typical commemoration.
Memories at Home, which organized the event, was founded by Nadav Embon, 30, and Adi Altschuler, 28, an Israeli couple from a small city near Tel Aviv. After unfulfilling experiences at public ceremonies in Israel, the pair decided to create their own evening filled with anecdotes from Holocaust survivors, artistic pieces and debates about how the Holocaust still affects the lives of Jews.
The idea was to turn the memorial experience into an active experience rather than a passive one.