Trudging through the soft earth of an autumnal forest, Grzegorz Kwiatkowski stops in a clearing. His trademark black jeans with gold ringmaster trim contrast against the greens and browns of the trees that rustle like the sounds of the Polish language in the wind.
Kwiatkowski is a man of many hats. He is a poet, the frontman of the post-rock band Trupa Trupa, and a critic of Poland’s memory politics.
For Kwiatkowski, this deserted spot just outside the grounds of the former Stutthof concentration camp encapsulates Poland’s complex and traumatized relationship with its past. Scattered on the forest floor and partially turned to mulch are the remains of hundreds of thousands of shoes taken from Nazi German death camps like Auschwitz.
Text: James Jackson
More at: www.meduza.io/en/
Photo: Bartosz Bańka.