Myth & Truth
State funds for the Antifa
In the whole of Germany and worldwide, antifascists are fighting against fascism and racism. They defend our constitutional rights on the streets, in front of refugee accommodations, in neighbourhoods shaped by migrant communities, in parliament and on the internet. Most members of the Antifa carry out this commitment on a voluntary basis. This applies yet again to Saxony. Saxony has become a nationwide synonym for every-day racist and xenophobic attacks. But instead of politics structurally strengthening democratic-, educational- and cultural projects, as well as subcultural free-spaces, budgets have been cut for decades.
Saxony needs the Antifa and the Antifa needs money. And so, we have taken the matter into our own hands.
We have transferred 10.000 € from state funds to the Antifa. For this we have acquired ten objects of importance to antifascism, which can be viewed in the exhibition Antifa – Myth & Truth from 15th August.
Leipzig, 2020, aluminium, burnt cardboard with acrylic paint, artist unknown
The burning shopping trolley of the Connewitz New Year’s Eve (Leipzig) rapidly became a symbol for extreme-left violence. In fact, however, it is a symbol for the political appropriation, the catastrophic communication of the authorities and the stereotypical images of the Antifa.
Ostritz, 2019, synthetic crate with 20 filled glass beer bottles, artists “Ostritzer Friedensfest” (‘Ostritz Peace Festival‘)
When 600 Neo-Nazis met in 2019 for the “Shield and Sword”-Festival in Ostritz, the local residents bought up the entire beer stock of the local supermarket. So, the neo-Nazis were left without anything to drink.
Bill of indictment
Leipzig, 2020, hardback edition, A4, artists Aktionsbündnis ‘NSU-Komplex auflösen!‘ (Action Alliance to ‘Dissolve the NSU complex!‘)
”We accuse!” At by now three NSU tribunals, the action group Aktionsbündnis ‘NSU-Komplex auflösen!‘ (Action Alliance to ‘Dissolve the NSU Complex!‘), together with those affected by NSU terror and racist violence, have publicly accused over 120 persons responsible in the NSU complex.
Bautzen, 2017, tin plate, plastic and red lacquer paint, artist Irmela Mensah-Schram
Equipped with a spray can, nail varnish remover and a scraper, the 75-year-old ‘sprayer grandma’ Irmela Mensah-Schramm has been removing right-wing hate stickers and graffiti for more than 30 years.
Chemnitz, 2018, electronics and plastic, artists ‘Antifa Zeckenbiss‘ (‘Antifa tick-bite‘)
Antifa-work is research-work. ‘Antifa Zeckenbiss‘ (‘Antifa tick-bite‘) released a mobile-phone video onto the web that showed people being hunted down during a Nazi demonstration in Chemnitz and thereby brought down the extreme right-wing former chief of the ‘intelligence service of the Federal Republic of Germany) Hans-Georg Maaßen.
Berlin, 2019, varnished aluminium, artist Martina Renner (Member of the German Parliament, ‘DIE LINKE‘)
It was with this badge that Martina Renner (Member of the German Parliament, DIE LINKE) professed her support for Antifascism in the German Bundestag. Her thanks to the Antifa led to a call to order for “violation of the dignity of the house”.
Dresden, 2019, polyester, artists ‘UTA Women’s Council‘ (‘UTA Frauenrat e.V.‘)
The autonomous Kurdish region of Rojava presents an attempt at an emancipative, self-organised and grassroots democratic society. However, in Germany, dedicated Kurds are faced with massive repressions for their political work.
Bremen, 2019, spruce, artists unknown
When Frank Magnitz, a member of the German Parliament for the AfD, was attacked, he published a photo of his wounds while still in his hospital bed and spoke of an assassination attempt with a piece of squared timber. This caused a nation-wide discussion about left-wing violence – but the squared timber was completely invented.
Göttingen, 1987 and 2020, acrylic and pencil on paper, A1, artist Bernd Langer
The present-day emblem of the ‘Antifascist Action‘ is the most frequently used symbol of the left scene and international icon of the fight against antifascism.
Regensburg, 2019, polyester, artists ‘VVN-BdA‘
For this banner with the inscription ‘Fascism is no opinion‘, the ‘Association of Persecuted Persons of the Nazi Regime – Association of Antifascists (VVN-BdA)’ was deprived of its non-profit status.
Your display case
Germany, 15th August – 1st October 2020, prize competition
Got Alexander Gauland’s swimming clothes? Cakes for the right-wing protests at the B96? Graffiti battles on large canvases with the Hamburg Police? There is one display case left for you. Win 1,000€ from the German state with your Antifascist Action!
Saxony needs the Antifa and the Antifa needs money!
The exhibition Antifa – Myth & Truth counterposes the vilification and criminalisation of antifascism with its diversity and beauty.
Whether a spray can, a bill of indictment, a YPJ-flag or a shopping trolley – all ten objects tell stories of the fight for democracy and human rights, of the fight against racism. The true image of Antifascism is diversity and heterogeneity. There is no “The Antifa” or a single ideal of antifascism, but a multiplicity of different and in some cases competing ideas. Antifa – Myth & Truth presents ten of these ideas using concrete antifascist exhibits.
When we speak of antifascism, we are always also speaking of criminalisation and repression by the state. Politics, the police, intelligence services and the media deliberately reduce this diversity to the stereotype of the rioting stone thrower. Extremism theory, Horseshoe theory, and the party-inherent anticommunism of the CDU (conservative German Christian Party) place Antifas on the same level as violent neo-Nazis. It may well be that also in Saxony a car burns once in a while: Nevertheless, it is still always antifascists and antiracists who are defending an idea of democracy and human rights against all the Nazi and racist threats.
Part of the festival “Gegenwarten | Presences”
Theaterplatz 1, 09111 Chemnitz
On August 22, 2020 we auctioned off our ten exhibits. In total, more than 6700 Euros were collected for the AJZ Chemnitz!
Besides the auction there was a panel discussion with Paula Irmschler, Stephan Anpalagan and the Anti-fascist Youth Congress, afterwards Irmela Mensah-Schramm, Bernd Langer, the action alliance “NSU-Komplex auflösen! On YouTube you can watch the event and the auction.