Last Summer I was asked to attend the clean-up of a Jewish cemetery in Cesky-Tesin, Czech Republic. The volunteers there were primarily from a German Christian organization, Action Reconciliation Service for Peace. Additionally there was a young Jewish man there, Miles, and my cousin, Dan. I was there for approximately two weeks, documenting the work and life in the cottage.
From approx. 60 hours of footage and interviews I edited a 10-minute piece for Walter (my grandfather, a survivor) that was viewed at a Reconciliation Conference in North Carolina. I decided to expand it to a longer, more contemplative work, which is this 30-minute film. Additionally this film acted as my senior thesis project at Binghamton University, for which I received Highest Honors from the department and was screened at the Art Mission Theatre in Binghamton, NY.
Except for a brief segment in the middle from an older video of Walter's trip to the area (link below), the entirety of the piece was filmed by myself on a Canon 60D on location and edited using Adobe Premiere Pro. I thank Walter for financial help with airfare and equipment, as well as funds from donors at Kickstarter. I also thank Monte McCollum for his wisdom and assistance throughout the editing process.
-Link to the project at ARSP: actionreconciliation.org/home/arsp-summer-camp-at-cesky-tesin.html
-Walter Ziffer: toto.lib.unca.edu/findingaids/oralhistory/SHOAH/ziffer.htm
-Footage of Walter Ziffer used: youtube.com/watch?v=g3Kgh-KRuB0