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Third-Party Seller in Hot Water for the Second Time Selling Holocaust Inspired Beach Towels

Pixels.com, a site that sells art, fashion and accessories printed with designs from independent artists, seems to have joined the disturbing trend of selling merchandise branded with images from the Nazi Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp. The images themselves are recognized works of art, and are not usually considered offensive or antisemitic in a historical view. However, once taken out of context, the accessories themselves have the potential to take on very different meanings. Buying a piece of artwork that reminds you of the Holocaust is not offensive in and of itself, but buying a shower curtain branded with the image of the gas chambers, or canisters of Zyklon B gas, is another thing entirely.

While searching for the tag “Birkenau” on the site, one can find, as of the writing of this article:

– 69 shower curtains
– 97 phone cases
– 80 throw pillows
– 139 greeting cards
– 41 yoga mats
– 62 beach towels
– 72 T-shirts (ranging from toddler to most adult sizes)
– 78 tote bags
– 64 portable battery chargers
– 64 mugs
– 71 duvet covers
– 40 fleece blankets

In total, there are currently 166 prints featuring images from the death camp. Most problematic are the very awkward combinations such as shower curtains branded with an image of gas chambers, duvet covers branded with cramped wooden bunk beds, and yoga mats branded with the infamous “Arbeit Macht Frei” (“Work will set you free”) sign from the entrance to the camp.

This is not a new problem for the site. In August, the official Twitter account for the Auschwitz Memorial Museum called out Pixels and its sister site FineArtAmerica for products ranging from poor taste to Nazi propaganda.

At issue is what constitutes the line between very poor taste and being hateful. Most disrespectful for many Jews are the exploitation of Holocaust victims’ images for trite commercial products.In recent days, retail giant Amazon has also come under fire for selling Auschwitz-themed Christmas ornaments, an Auschwitz-themed bottle opener and an Auschwitz-themed beach towel.

Source: https://www.jpost.com/Diaspora/Nazi-propaganda-for-sale-on-Amazon-599754