El libro negro del terror Nazi en Europa (The Black Book of Nazi Terror in Europe)

Various artists/makers

Not on view

Conceived in the winter of 1942–43 at the height of the Second World War by a group of political refugees in Mexico City, the 'Black Book of Nazi Terror' was coordinated by Hannes Meyer when he was the business director of the Taller de Gráfica Popular in Mexico City. Meyer also selected the illustrations and solicited help of TGP artists for the prints. Mexican President Don Manuel Avila Camacho sponsored the book along with by Dr Manuel Prado (President of Peru) and Dr Eduardo Benes (exiled President of Czechoslovakia). The book comprises 286 pages, 164 photographs and 50 print illustrations. The texts are written by 55 authors and 24 visual artists. The contributors come from 16 countries. The writers include Thomas Mann, Anna Seghers and Leon Feuchtwanger, and the TGP artists, include Leopoldo Méndez, Pablo O'Higgins and Alfredo Zalce. With its shocking photographs of Nazi crimes and its victims the book presented the horrifying truth of Nazi atrocities to the world. The essays also cover Nazi terrors as well as resistance. The book opens with a dedication ‘A todos los que murieron. A todos los que están luchando’ (‘To all those who died. To all those who are fighting’) accompanied by an illustration by Frans Masereel showing a skeleton leading a large group of people. The book is one of the earliest accounts of the horrors of fascism and it contains some of first depictions of the atrocities carried out by the Nazis. Leopoldo Méndez’s print of people being loaded onto a train to be taken to a concentration camp is perhaps the earliest treatment of this subject in a print.

El libro negro del terror Nazi en Europa (The Black Book of Nazi Terror in Europe), Alexander Abusch (German, 1902–1982), Letterpress, photographs, lithographs, linocuts (reproduced photo-mechanically)

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