Perhaps it is not coincidence that reversing Warsaw gives us "Saw war". The devastative effects of World War 2 forever left deep scars in the fabric of the city of Warsaw. During its occupation, the city lived through two uprisings in the span of two years which forged its identity. Our identity. In April, we commemorate the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising which saw Jews fight for a dignified end in times of horrific genocide. In August, our thoughts are with the Warsaw uprising of 1944 which saw partisan forces alongside Warsaw inhabitants take part in a heroic but tragic fight to free the Polish capital from the Nazis. Both uprisings, paid for by an immense bloodbath, resulted from the refusal of living as captives; they incarnated a desperate and heroic outcry for freedom even if it meant death. But at least a death that would be self-imposed.
As time and generations go by, the memory of both uprisings becomes increasingly a handful of facts occasionally wrapped in anecdotes that live through grandparents and great-grandparents. The world has changed and so has Warsaw. Despite this, the heroic events that took place some 80 years ago can still be seen in the urban landscape of this amazing city. Some walls bearing the scars still stand to this day; those scars being bullet holes no less. This is how we have created the Memory Traces project. We have chosen 10 such special sites in Warsaw with existing bullet holes which we cast in bronze. These bronze casts allow us to commemorate and immortalize important history which forever left its mark on Warsaw.
The logo of the Memory Traces project expresses its intent at its simplest form; the casting of bullet holes still visible on some buildings of Warsaw. They are authentic traces of rounds fired during the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising as well as during the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. The logo is not a trace from a particular site, but nonetheless it’s symbolic of the fate of the city. It tells a story about the destruction of the city and the suffering of its people, mainly civilians. That is why it consists of a combination of four trace fragments that came into existence during both uprisings and that still remain on the walls in different areas of Warsaw to this day. In such a symbolic way, our logo brings together the suffering and heroism of the city to life.