Colorized photo reveals the bruises — and strength — of 14-year-old girl who was killed at Auschwitz

Czeslawa Kwoka (Twitter / Marina Amaral)

Brazilian artist Marina Amaral has colorized a registration photo taken of a 14-year-old girl who was held at the Auschwitz concentration camp, revealing the cuts and bruises the young teenager suffered at the hands of a guard just prior to the photo being taken. Czeslawa Kwoka and her mother, who were deported from Poland by the Nazis, were among 318 women to be sent on a train on December 13, 1942, to Auschwitz, the infamous concentration camp in Oświęcim, Poland. According to survivor Wilhelm Brasse, who said he took the registration photo, the visible facial bruises and cut lip highlighted by the colorization were the result of a savage beating Kwoka endured at the hands of a guard. Just three months later, on March 12, 1943, Kwoka was given a phenol injection into the heart, which put her to death.

According to Amaral, it can be harder for people to relate to photos of people in black and white than photos in color. By colorizing the photo, Amaral explained, she hoped to remind people that girls such as Kwoka “were human beings who had dreams, ambitions, fears, friends, family, and had all this taken from them.

“When we see the photos in black and white, we get the feeling that those events happened only in the history books,” said Amaral. “By restoring the colors on her face, I was able to show the colors of the blood and the bruises, which made everything even more real … Unfortunately, Czeslawa was just one among millions of others, but the expression on her face — so much fear, and at the same time so much courage, will stay with me forever.”

Read the full story at Metro.


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