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Germany Announces Finalists in Holocaust Memorial Contest

German officials have announced four finalists in their much-delayed and controversial search for a design for a national Holocaust memorial in Berlin.

The finalists announced at a news conference Sunday included New York-based artists Peter Eisenman and Richard Serra, Paris-based Jochen Gerz, and Berlin- based Daniel Libeskind and Gesine Weinmiller.

Their projects — chosen from 19 invited entries — will be exhibited to the public in December and January, with the final choice expected to be made by the end of January.

Groundbreaking for the $6.5 million monument is slated for Jan. 20, 1999, the anniversary of the 1942 Wannsee Conference, at which Nazi planners put their stamp of approval on the “Final Solution.”

German Chancellor Helmut Kohl vetoed the winner of the first competition amid controversy over the design and location of the monument.

That design — a huge, sloping stone slab engraved with the names of the 6 million Jewish victims of the Holocaust — had met with much criticism.

The federal government has donated space near Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate for the planned monument.

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