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Reproduction Of Repugnance

A photograph, consisting of bodies of two teenagers, barely clothed – one wearing over-sized shoes, while the other with only one shoe….is enough to send waves of disgust and repulsion down one’s spine! The world has seen many such atrocities in the form of Holocaust images. The piles of dead bodies, bodies of bullet-ridden children and other such images of the carnival of death still don’t allow us to sleep peacefully at night. And those images are in black-and-white. Now, a 17-year-old youngster from Britain – Joel Bellviure – has applied colour schemes while restoring those snapshots. He has also restored some historical images clicked seven decades ago.
In reply to the query about his decision to restore those black-and-white images, Joel said: “A colourised Holocaust picture can raise awareness that, although being seventy years old, the essence of evil will never evolve, that death doesn’t need to be romanticised because of being in black-and-white.” A British news agency recently published some images restored by the teenager.


Members of the 42nd Rainbow Division, 7th US Army uncover a wagon transporting some of the horrors of Dachau (Picture: Joel Bellviure /mediadrumworld)

The Nazis had slaughtered around 10 million people, including 5-6 million Jews. Although all of us have this information, it’s very difficult to find historical documents of this particular period. As a result, there is no clear-cut answer to many questions. In Joel’s words: “The lack of a true comprehensive history and the search for answers to a catastrophe that killed more than 10 million innocent people, including at least five million Jews, has left room for denial, which questions in an interested way the previous numbers or even the Holocaust itself. They refer to themselves as ‘revisionists’, although they violate any historical method and their only objective is hatred. Perhaps these images make them see more closely the barbarism they defend.
The image of those two teenagers is one of the most important images that have been restored by Joel. The two teenagers were inmates of the Ampfing sub-camps in Germany and the photo was clicked after the US Third Army troops liberated the inmates on May 4, 1945. The coloured image attracts our eyes to their ribs coming out of their bodies and their skeletal legs.


Senator Alben W Barkley takes a look to a pile of bodies at Buchenwald concentration camp (Picture: Joel Bellviure /mediadrumworld)

Another photo was clicked at Buchenwald concentration camp, in which former US Vice President and then Senator Alben W Barkley was seen taking a look at a pile of naked dead bodies. It was the largest concentration camp in Nazi Germany, as the number of prisoners was 0.25 million and 60,000 among them were killed. The US forces took control of the camp on April 15, 1945. However, the Germans had already left the camp, leaving piles of bodies.


A few of the thousands of wedding rings the Nazis removed from their victims to salvage the gold (Picture: Joel Bellviure /mediadrumworld)

These are a tiny sample of the brutality and death that the Nazi regime unleashed between 1939 and 1945. The images are hard, but they must be seen to understand what happened in those years so close to us,” stressed Joel, who has modernised the 70-year-old images.

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