Directed by artist Françoise Dupré, DORA PROJECT (DP) is an art project that explores the contemporary relevance of history and the performative process of remembrance through the activating of archives and sites of memories.
DP’s first project: DORA PROJECT 1 (2015-2016), in collaboration with visual and participatory artist Rebecca Snow, was a twelve-month long cross-generational archiving and participatory project based in South East London. It included Commemorative Public Events in Greenwich, New Cross, Peckham and an exhibition at Peckham Platform (April-May 2016). Project’s activities included visits to V2 sites, local commemorative participatory events and exhibition. This website provides full details of these activities.
A follow-up project is currently being designed. Informed by the concept of Multidirectional Memory (Michael Rotheberg), DORA PROJECT 2 will investigate ‘invisible’ memories, peripheral to national and European narratives. In our world of multiple and diasporic cultures, what and where are the polyphonic sites and acts of memory?
DORA PROJECT 1 ’s point of origin is WW2 London and V2 victims. They were Londoners and Mittelbau-Dora concentration camp prisoners who assembled the V2s in Germany. Between September 1944 and March 1945, V2 attacks killed 2,500 Londoners. In Mittelbau-Dora concentration camp, more than 20,000 prisoners died between August 1943 and April 1945.
The project follows the wishes of Dupré’s uncle and a Dora survivor, Robert Berthelot (1922-2008), to tell the stories of the concentration camp, the V2 and its engineers. Re-connecting the history of space rockets to its Nazi origin, DP aims to address the ethics of science and technology for war and usage in its aftermath. The project invites us to question and care for our histories, cultures and ethics. It interrogates and contributes to the watchful necessity that is the retracing of our past, for fear of loss and a xenophobic re-writing of history. This is the legacy of the V2 victims.
The 3 October 2017 was the 75th anniversary of the first successful launch of an A-4 (V2) into space. The V2 – a Nazi weapon and space artefact – was the first guided ballistic missile. Its successors are space-launching rockets and intercontinental missiles with nuclear warheads.
Rebecca Snow, Roll Call, 2014. © Rebecca Snow. (Mittelbau-Dora Concentration Camp Memorial)
Artist research visit to Mittlebau-Dora Memorials, photos by Rebecca Snow, July 2014