Site 3: Forced laborer “sick camp”
Witness statement: “Mostly, they were young men and women from the Ukraine, teenagers really”
One Kilometer by Sigrid Jakob is an ongoing forensic investigation into a peripheral area of fields and forest just outside the village of her birth.
This area is a prime example of bucolic Southern German countryside, and serves a variety of uses such as agriculture, hunting and recreation.
However, vague childhood memories, rumors, and odd apparitions suggest other times and other uses. Over the years Sigrid Jakob has attempted to piece together the full story of this landscape through research, photography and interviews with witnesses. This research is presented in the form of photographs, witness statements and a book containing further images and documents.
While some facts were incontrovertibly established (there was a forced laborer “sick camp”, a military airport and an American missile base), not all have left a permanent footprint. Many apparitions in the landscape remain mysterious, and a number of rumors and eyewitness accounts do not fully correlate with the physical features.
The project as it stands is an audit of sorts. Artist and viewer are invited to make sense of the fragmentary evidence.
While this investigation is ongoing, and more evidence is being unearthed, it should be noted that this area has been rezoned for industrial use, and will be covered by a warehouse complex within a couple of years. This most recent reinvention of the landscape is likely to obliterate most traces of other, older layers.