Jewish Holocaust Memorial
The Jewish Holocaust memorial in Berlin began construction in 2002 after years of contoversy and delay. An international design contest was held in 1998 to find a a suitable memorial to honour the millions of Jews murdered during World War II. The eventual winners were two Americans, architect Peter Eisenman and sculptor Richard Serra. Richard Serra later withdrew from the project after his designed was scaled down. Chancellor Helmut Kohl had rejected a few of the top entries because he felt they were too grandiose.
The memorial centerpiece consists of 2,700 concrete pillars of different heights on a 600sqm site between the Brandenburg Gate and Adolf Hilter's bunker. The pillars are designed to represent a waving cornfield.
In 2003 more controversy surrounded the project when it was discovered that the German construction firm, Degussa who won the contract to cover the pillars with the graffiti-proof coating was contected with the supply of gas to Nazi gas chambers. Degussa had once been part of Degesch, a company that supplied Zyklon B to many Nazi Concentration camps.