Laying traces in public spaces was an important theme for the sculptor and conceptual artist Gunter Demnig long before the first Stolpersteine were laid. The projects “Duftmarken Cassel-Paris” (1980), “Blutspur Kassel-London” (1981), “Ariadne-Faden Kassel–Venedig” (1982), “Landschaftskonserven” (1984) and “Flaschenpost Kassel–New York” are but some examples.
In 1990, Gunter Demnig used white house paint to commemorate the deportation of 1,000 Sinti and Roma in Cologne in May 1940. He saw it as a last dress rehearsal for the later mass transportation of Jews to ghettos and concentration and extermination camps. The idea to engrave brass plates and fix them into the ground in 21 places to preserve the text “Mai 1940 – 1000 Roma und Sinti” (May 1940 – 1000 Roma and Sinti”) emerged when the paint began to fade ... read more