Dora Project I (2016-2015)

DORA PROJECT I has concluded!  The official end date was 31 May 2016.  A follow up project is currently being developed by Dupré.  Françoise Dupré and Rebecca Snow thank everyone who came to visit the 2016 exhibition and participated in the exciting events they hosted with Peckham Platform . The project, its publication and the exhibition have received great positive feedback.
Photographs of the exhibition are on the exhibition page.                                                                               
For a free copy of the publication contact the project.

Meanwhile do check the website for follow up events

Most recent Talk:

8 mai 2017.  Après la Commémoration de la Victoire de 1945.
10h30, Salle Robert-Doisneau, Buthiers, Seine et Marne, France.
Exposition à la mémoire de Robert Berthelot, ancien habitant de Buthiers et déporté aux camps de concentration de Buchenwald et Dora.
Film de Rebecca Snow sur le site du Mémorial de Mittelbau-Dora.
Conférence de la nièce de Robert Berthelot, Françoise Dupré, sur les V2 et ses victimes.

8 May 2017, following VE DAY celebration.
10.30am, Salle Robert-Doisneau, Buthiers, Seine et Marne, France.
An exhibition in memory of Robert Berthelot, deported to Buchenwald and Dora concentration camps.
Film by Rebecca Snow made at Mittelbau-Dora Memorial.
Talk by Robert Berthelot’s niece, Françoise Dupré, on the V2 and its victims.

Previous follow up talks and events include:

Behind the Collection: Françoise Dupré, Black Cultural Archives, Brixton, London. Friends of Black Cultural Archives presents, Evening Talk, Thursday, 2 March 2017 from 18:00 to 19:30

Dupré was on the BBC LONDON RADIO Robert Elms Show on  3 May 2016. Check the Exhibition page for more details.

Over the 2016 summer, Dupré spoke about DORA PROJECT at various international conferences.
  • In London on 19-21 July 2016 at UCL Centre for Holocaust Education, Institute of Education, University College. The British Association for Holocaust Studies (BAHS) annual conference focused on the presence of the Holocaust in society, politics and culture, c.1970 – 2015. Dupré examined and compared current and contrasting museum displays of V2s (London, Science Museum and Imperial War Museum; Washington, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution; France, La Coupole, Centre d’Histoire et de Mémoire du Nord-Pas-de-Calais).
  •  In Sweden on 15-17 June 2016 at Stockholm University,  Performative Commemoration of Painful Pasts. Dupré discussed DORA PROJECT’s performative process and its instrumental role in the project’s practice of memory.
  • In France on 27-28 May 2016 at La Coupole, Centre d’Histoire et Planétarium, near Saint Omer, Nord-Pas-de-Calais. The title of the conference was Les déportés de France au camp de concentration de Mittelbau-Dora et Kommandos (1943-1945).



Dora Project was led by artist Françoise Dupré in collaboration with Rebecca Snow, a visual and participatory artist.  It  was a cross-generational archiving and participatory project that addresses, through art, the contemporary relevance of the history of World War Two and early rocket engineering.. The project aimed to create artworks that critically engage with the politics of visualisation of memory as practice and addressed questions of ethics in art and science.

Dora, known today as Mittelbau-Dora, was the code name given to the Nazi Dora Concentration Camp, located near the town of Nordhausen in Thuringia, Central Germany (1943-1945).  A site kept secret because of its armament company Mittelwerk,  a vast underground factory that assembled V1 rockets (flying bombs) and V2 rockets (the first ballistic missiles).  It is estimated that more than 20,000 prisoners died between August 1943 and April 1945 in the camps of Mittelbau-Dora.

Between September 1944 and March 1945, V2 killed around 2500 Londoners.  After WW2, V2 technology was used  for the development of space and military American, European Russian and British programmes.  While many Londoners have heard about the V2, few know about its origin that contaminates and connect forever space conquest to the concentrationary universe.

Through the project, the artists developed  creative strategies for artworks that critically, ethically and affectively mourn victims of genocide and war, engaged with the politics of visual re-presentation of memory and the concentrationary universe and encouraged debates around the application of wartime science.  This was achieved through a series of artworks, participatory projects and events:  Mapping, an installation by Dupré;  Grey Area: a map sketched in filma film by Snow; DORA POSTCARD PROJECT, Field Report a school project and Commemorative Public Events in South East London.  Mapping  and  Field Report  were brought together in a public exhibition in London at Peckham Platform (8 April-15 May 2016).  The exhibition included talks and participatory activities  designed to engage audiences and local community groups.


Dora Project was developed through participation and collaboration. This performative approach and practice of memory is central today, while we are confronted with fading traces and memories.

Dora project was generated in response to the artists’ family histories.  Françoise Dupré’s uncle, Robert Berthelot was a French Resistant political prisoner, slave labourer and survivor of Mittelbau-Dora concentration camp.  Rebecca Snow’s great-grand-father, James Anderson, an industrial chemist, worked for the British Intelligence Objective Sub-Committee (BIOS), recovering German industrial evidences in 1945.

Dora Project contributes to contemporary debates around the nature and role of memorials and ethics in science and art.

Dora Project coincided with the 70th anniversary of the liberation of WW2 concentration and extermination camps.

There is  one survivor of Mittelbau-Dora living in the UK.  You can read and listen to Eugene Black story by visiting http://holocaustlearning.org/

Dora Project was funded by Arts Council England, Grants for the arts and CFAR, Centre for Fine Art Research, Birmingham School of Art-BCU,.

Dora Project was supported by Fondation pour la Mémoire de la Déportation, Commission Dora Ellrich,  l’ Association Française Buchenwald Dora et Kommandos and La Coupole Centre d’Histoire et de Mémoire du Nord – Pas-de-Calais, France

Partners: Goldsmiths, University of London, UK, JFS, Peckham Platform

Consultants: Michael Neufeld, Curator of early rocketry, The Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum, Washington, USA.  Laurent Thiery, historien, La Coupole, Centre d’Histoire et de Mémoire du Nord – Pas-de-Calais France.  Gretchen Schafft, Public Anthropologist, Department of Anthropology, American University, Washington, USA.

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Artist research visit to Mittlebau-Dora Memorials, photos by Rebecca Snow, July 2014

2 responses to “About

  1. Before I was born my Grandmother was just shopping in woolworths when the rocket hit – the devastation caused to her family is still felt today. We need to remember that it was only yesterday to some people and we need to teach our young people about it to secure a safe future.


  2. Reading this material and listening to the students articulate their thoughts and experiences is a hand clenching shock. The depth and the level of work and research shows the excellent collaboration to be highly successful yet desperately emotive. The sublime contextual message of the regrowth and innocently filmed flora and fauna, provokes the question at the very heart of Dora?


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