Obj. ID: 48142 ‘Por donde pasó el Silencio’ Holocaust Memorial in the Jewish Cemetery of La Tablada, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2008
‘Por donde pasó el Silencio’
Who is Commemorated?
Warsaw Ghetto Fighters
The sculpture is set within a long trapezoidal space set into the adjacent pavement. The trapezoid is marked by a boundary of raised bricks that are painted red. Within the space, the ground is filled with rough broken (mostly gray) granite stones. These are rough, often with sharp edges; not the smoothed stones found at many other memorials.
Set on the rear third of the stone-filled trapezoid is a gray granite base with a flat black granite top, from which rises a stainless-steel sculpture. The plan of the base is irregular, and suggests the letter “M”. Railroad tracks on three wood railroad ties run from near the front of the space over the scattered granite stones and extend under the sculpture base. A shorter track enters under the base on the left side.
Placed seemingly at random around the front area of the tracks are triangular slabs of granite. Some of these are set flat, some are tilted, and one is set on its edge in the middle of the tracks. The sculptor has said these represent broken or lost lives.
Two tilted stones have inscribed metal plaques. One is inscribed in Spanish with the title, artist, and date. The other is a commemorative exhortation in Hebrew, that quotes a passage of Psalm 79:10, asking vengeance for the shedding of God’s servants’ blood.
The shiny stainless-steel sculpture on the base consists of two upright square posts that are bent outward, but then lean together near the top where they join. The artist has said these represent broken columns through which souls pass. Attached to the outer edge of one of the bent “columns” is what looks like a stylized lion’s leg and paw. This may allude to the Lion of Judah, and the fallen Warsaw Ghetto fighters, and especially Mordechai Anielewicz, who is mentioned by name in a plaque set on the sculpture base.
On small plaque in Spanish (1):
Por donde pasó el silencio
Mónica Chames Mayo 2008
Translation: 'Where did the silence go?' / Mónica Chames / May 2008
On small plaque in Hebrew (2):
הי נקום נקמת דם
Translation: In memory of the holy fighter, revenge of the blood of thy servants which is shed (paraphrase of Psalm 78:10)
On large plaque in Spanish:
‘Por donde pasó el Silencio’
Homenaje a los jóvenes que lucharon en el ghetto de Varsovia
Representados en la figura de su líder Mordejai Anielewicz
Escultura conmemorativa, cuyos ejes temáticos aluden a la metáfora.
Las manitos bíblicas, contra las plagas.
Los triángulos rotos en el piso, las vidas quebradas.
La M de Mordejai en el basamento.
Las columnas quebradas por donde pasan las voces de los ausentes.
Las vías del tren, la tragedia.
Idea y Colaboración: EUGENIA UNGER, sobreviviente.
Mayo de 2008
Translation: 'Where did the Silence go?'/ Mónica Chames / Tribute to the young people who fought in the Warsaw ghetto / Represented in the figure of their leader Mordechai Anielewicz. / Commemorative sculpture, whose themes allude to metaphor. Biblical little hands, against plagues. The broken triangles on the floor, the broken lives. The M for Mordechai on the base. The broken columns through which the voices of the absent pass. The train tracks, the tragedy. / Idea and Collaboration: EUGENIA UNGER, survivor. / May 2008
Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA)
iron (narrow gauge train tracks)
zinc (?) plaques
Trapezoidal plot approximately:
4.5 m. x 2.85 m x 3.82 m x 2.77 m
"Cementerio Comunitario de Tablada" Community Center Website, https://amia.org.ar/sepelioscomunitarios/como-llegar/ (accessed March 12, 2023)
“Las víctimas de la Shoá y los combatientes de los ghettos serán homenajeados en La Tablada,” Agencia de noticias (AJN), May 2, 2008, https://agenciaajn.com/noticia/abbas-las-fronteras-de-1967-son-una-precondicion-para-el-dialogo-53737 (accessed March 12, 2023)