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The War Comes to Germany

Accession Number
2013/2.322

Title
The War Comes to Germany

Artist(s)
Dmitri Baltermants

Artist Nationality
Russian (culture or style)

Object Creation Date
1945; printed 2003

Medium & Support
gelatin silver print on paper

Dimensions
16 in x 20 in (40.64 cm x 50.8 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Thomas Wilson '79 and Jill Garling '80

Subject matter
At the center of this photograph, a forlorn woman carries folded-up blankets on a dusty city street somewhere in Germany. In the lower-left, an elderly couple with downcast eyes reinforce the dolorous mood of the image. The empty shells of buildings, barren trees, rubble, and smoke fill the background and round out this scene of civilian suffering. A group of blankets, pans, and jars in the foreground suggest that these figures are now all refugees—though formerly they had been citizens of the powerful Third Reich which has now collapsed. This image forms part of Baltermants’ larger project—as an official photographer to the Kremlin—which, spread across numerous portfolios, aimed to document scenes from the Soviet Union’s fight against Nazi Germany during World War II (1939-1945), known in the USSR as the Great Patriotic War.

Physical Description
A woman carrying blankets walks down a street lined by bombed-out buildings and littered with debris while others sit outside with their belongings in the lower foreground. 

Primary Object Classification
Photograph

Collection Area
Photography

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
armies
battles
fighting
journalistic photography
refugees
ruins
war photography
wars

& Author Notes

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