and framework conditions
The German Federal Lower House (Bundestag) decided on 12th December
2003, in favour of giving the memorial to honour the homosexual victims of
National Socialism a reality with form and shape at a site in Berlin. To
help finding the design of the memorial site an invited two-stage artistic
competition with up to 30 competitors will be held. The competition will be
carried out by the Berlin-City Administration on behalf of the Federal
authorities, and in coordination with the Initiative "Remember the
Homosexual Victims of National Socialism" and the Lesbian and Gay
Federation in Germany (LSVD). The Initiative "Remember the Homosexual
Victims of National Socialism" and the Lesbian and Gay Federation in
Germany (LSVD) will hold an open application phase in front of the
competition to invite some of the applicants to take part in the
competition. This is to encourage as wide a spectrum of artists as possible
The planned memorial site is in central Berlin (borrough of Berlin-Mitte) on
the south-east edge of the Tiergarten opposite the site of the memorial to
the murdered Jews of Europe.
The proposed site is is coloured on
The competition between the invited participants will begin in April 2005
with a Colloquium and it is intended to make final decisions in the period
December 2005/January 2006.
Only in recent years have a few individuals approached this very sensitive
theme with concepts for city spaces.
Gays and lesbians were subjected in the past to severe persecution, which
reached a highpoint in the period of National Socialism. After the seizure
of power by the NSDAP (Nazi Party), the organisations of gays and lesbians
were banned. Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld's Institute for Sexual Sciences, situated
in Berlin, was stormed and plundered by the SA (an armed unit of the Nazi
In 1935 the National Socialists ordered the total criminalisation of all
sexual activities between men. This was done by changing Paragraph 175 of
the Penal Code so that the acts criminalised were unlimited and the
punishment was severely increased. The increased severity of the legal
decisions served the Nazi concept of preventing the spread of the
"homosexual plague" and infection of the "healthy German folk".
Between 1935 and 1945 about 50.000 judgements were passed under Paragraphs
175 and 175a of the penal code. Thousands of gays were sent to concentration
camps as a result of being homosexual. In the camp they mostly had to wear
the "Pink Triangle" as an identification mark. Only few survived. Other
measures of persecution that homosexuals were subjected to were compulsory
castration and medical experiments supposed to "cure" them.
The period of Nazi-rule meant for homosexuals living a life of enforced
denial of their real self and of permanent danger and anxiety of being
Both in the Federal Republic of Germany and in the GDR after 1949 men
accused of sexual relations with another consenting adult were punished by
the law. In the Federal Republic Paragraph 175 remained in force in its Nazi
form until 1969.
With the creation of the memorial site the Federal Republic of Germany
according to the decision of the Bundestag of 12th December 2003 wants to -
"honour the persecuted and murdered victims", - "help to keep alive the
remembrance of the injustices done", as well as - set a "signal against
intolerance, enmity towards and rejection of gays and lesbians".
As far as background to the political importance of the matter please refer
to the decisions and debates of the German Bundestag in the years 2000, 2002
and 2003, which are documented on our
web-site (unfortunately these texts are
only published in German).
Conditions of Participation
We call on artists as well as other interested persons, to apply to take
part in the artistic competition. We expect from the applicants a short
summary of the concept or first sketches of the idea for the memorial site
(Max. of 2 pages Din A4), a curriculum vitae, as well as a description as to
how the persona envisages their participation in the competition and what
experience they can draw on - for instance their artistic development. (Max.
1 page DIN A4). Applications per e-Mail will be accepted, but only if
documents are submitted in
PDF-Format. To ensure that e-Mail applications have been received they
will be confirmed by e-Mail.
The participants declare themselves as accepting that their ideas and
suggestions can be stored for documentation purposes, however, the copyright
remains with the author. The participation in the application phase does not
give any right in any form to participate in the artistic competition.
Application documents can not be returned.
Questions on the application process will only be answered publicly in the
created for that purpose. Questions can be submitted on-line there or sent
firstname.lastname@example.org. We will
answer questions until 10th January 2005. No questions will be answered in
the period from 15th December 2004 to 5th January 2005.
Choosing the participants for the competition
A Committee appointed by the Initiative and the LSVD will examine the
applications and ideas received and invite up to seven authors to take part
in the competition.
The deadline for applications is 31st January 2005.
Applications should be submitted to:
Senatsverwaltung für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kultur
Bewerbung für Wettbewerb
"Gedenkort für die im Nationalsozialismus verfolgten Homosexuellen"
Brunnenstr. 188 - 190
10119 Berlin - Mitte
or per e-Mail to:
Press Release - 02.12.2004
Appeal For The Monument
Colloquium on the Artistic Design
A Chronicle of Persecution
Members of the Choosing committee:
Leonie Baumann, Geschäftsführerin der Neuen Gesellschaft für Bildende
Direktor des Kunstvereins Hamburg
Dipl.-Ing. Architekt, Mitbegründer der Initiative »Der homosexuellen
Prof. Dr. Andreas Meyer-Hanno,
Opernregisseur, Mitbegründer der Initiative Mahnmal Homosexuellenverfolgung,
Frankfurt am Main
Rechtsanwalt, von 1994 bis 1998 im Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kultur
des Landes Brandenburg Referatsleiter für die Gedenkstätten
Plan of the Surrounding Area
Photographs of the Area
Decisions of the German Bundestag (only in German)
7th December 2000
17th May 2002
12th December 2003
Tribute for gay victims of Nazism
Germany is planning to build a memorial to commemorate the thousands of
homosexuals persecuted under the Nazis...
(BBC News, 14.11.2003)