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Swedish artist uses Holocaust ashes in art

Dec. 6, 2012 at 5:59 PM

LUND, Sweden, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- A Swedish artist sparked outrage and a possible police investigation after he said he used paint made of Holocaust victims' ashes.

Carl Michael von Hausswolff said he collected the ashes at the Nazi concentration camp Majdenak years ago. An explanation accompanying the painting says he mixed the ashes with water and used them to create a painting on acrylic paper. The painting is presently on display at a gallery in Lund, the Swedish news agency TT said Thursday.

"You shouldn't use remains as souvenirs," art critic Tor Billgren told The Local, a Swedish newspaper.

A Jewish art critic went much farther in condemning the painting.

"It is repulsive in the extreme," he Salomon Schulman told Sveriges Television. "Who knows, some of the ashes might come from some of my relatives?"

Schulman said he's refused to set eyes on the painting.

An unidentified person contacted TT to say they'd reported von Hausswolff to police for violating the country's "peace of the dead" law. TT said it was unable to verify whether any criminal investigation will be undertaken.

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