Filmfest 2004

"Vergessensfuge" is a meditation, in the form of the musical structure of the fuge, inspired by photographs of female concentration camp guards taken by George Rogers on the capture of Bergen-Belsen, at the conclusion of World War 2. In a recitation by Geno Lechner, the common explanation - "I was only following orders" is obliquely elaborated upon, looping in repetitions in the manner of a fuge, motifs shifting as the work progresses. The intention of this work is to attempt, through "art" to by-pass the stale and rigid defenses by which we suppress memory of our own actions in order to evade responsibility for them. While "Vergessensfuge" uses the German experience, both of the KZ's of WW2, and of the post-Wall exposure of DDR documents in particular, the exact same "story" is applicable to the Soviet Gulag, the camps of China, the killing fields of Cambodia, and, presently and most pressing, the new American system of "outsourced" torture camps and prisons in Afghanistan, Diego Garcia, Guantanamo, and elsewhere, where the exact same story is being played out, with the exact same refrains echoing again. Jon Jost

tags: Experimental

Cast: Geno Lechner


Director: Jon Jost