Date: April 2020 – April 2021
Partner: Torture Exposed Inc. (Carmen and Peter
Griffis, owners of Royal Castle of Nuremberg Collection of Torture Implements )
Project Members: Devin Benczik, Alex Doro, Sydney Laiss
Torture Exposed features The Royal Castle of Nuremberg Collection of Torture Instruments. Since its inception in the 1860s, the collection has been presented as a historical collection of torture devices. However, in reality it has served as a vehicle for propaganda, historical tourism, and macabre entertainment. Collections such as this spread misinformation about the history of torture and torture devices, much of which continues to persist today.
Torture Exposed is comprised of four themes: “What is Torture” establishes a general understanding of torture and its many manifestations. “Religion and Politics” considers historic instances in which torture served as the basis of politically and/or religiously motivated propaganda. “Fantasy and Entertainment” explores the portrayal of torture in various media, as well as addresses several misconceptions tied to famous torture devices. “Capital Punishment” focuses on the evolution of devices used to carry out the death penalty from the medieval to the modern, and touches upon various abolitionist arguments. By producing an academically researched and educationally focused exhibition, Torture Exposed seeks to separate fact from fiction.