(werktitel : unbekannt) box shaped memories
Exhibition project by Ada Karlbauer, Sienna Brunnthaler and adO/Aptive in Weyer, Upper Austria. June 2022
Aline Sofie Rainer, Leon Leder, Bartholomaeus Waechter, David Takeshi Yoshida, Florian Sigl, Hanna Besenhard, Jakob Gsöllpointner, Janina Weißengruber, Lisa Sifkovits, Pille-Riin Jaik, Rosa Andraschek, Rudi Fröch and Tobias Ehrhardt
(werktitel : unbekannt)"The only reason there is so much talk about Memory is because it no longer exists is a much-quoted sentence by Pierre Nora. This sentence confirms the established logic according to which a phenomenon must first be lost in order to fully enter consciousness. Consciousness generally develops "under the sign of what has passed". This logic corresponds well to the retrospective character of memory: "Memory only begins when the experience to which it refers rests concluded in the past.”
The memory now lies in the spine. The present is slowly overflowing. Once again, a museum becomes an archive, an archive becomes an oblivion. The former Enns Museum is liquidated - the "Kasten an der Reith", as some called it. The cultural-historical collection was all forgotten in the halls, just like their stories. They lie in boxes, waiting in layers. Under each layer the next view, asleep until the day after tomorrow. Abundance meets emptiness. The exhibits have to go, are to be archived, need a new place. Forgetting is pressing. Things have accumulated. Time passes more slowly here. The stories that are still to be told have to be told.
box shaped memoriesOn the occasion of the dissolution of the Ennsmuseum, the first part of the exhibition "box shaped memories" of the series (werktitel : unbekannt)examined these spaces, these objects without perspective, the history that has been obstructed. At the centre of the discussion is the question of how to deal with micro-, and macro-archives in a present that successively transitions - not only physically. Micro-archives arise everywhere, at any time, sometimes without intention: the years pass, the stacks remain. Stories emerge everywhere, at any time: as silent correspondence, between the most diverse media spaces, loose starting points condense into new narratives, into fictional realities that slowly take on a life of their own. In a divided present with different perspectives, the relationships between origin and interpretation are reset. In addition, physical residues, as well as accumulations in the present shadow of a war, take on a whole new meaning.
The history of Weyer on the Enns: iron transport, iron processing, the scene of two world wars. Geological history and folk culture of the Upper Austrian Enns region. The "Kasten", first mentioned in 1373, was the most important landing place for rafters and boatmen on the Enns between Großreifling and Steyr. The history of the village was shaped by its spatial setting: the Enns valley. It is in this environment that (werktitel : unbekannt) presents an attempt to rethink the flexible knowledge networks of a dawning archive. A zoom from the own into the unknown and vice versa. The old narratives are looked at anew, positioned differently, read again. Not the entire collection becomes accessible, instead the focus is on a selection of artefacts. A counteraction against forgetting: Taking a position, a new connotation of the historical objects and questions.
Artist meets Archive.A selection of young, contemporary artists from different fields reflect on the hidden history of the objects within their own work. Dialogues, reactions and shared narratives emerge. The starting point was a selection of 12 objects from the exhibition's collection packed in boxes. These were documented and sent to the selected artists. Over a period of two months, they reacted to the respective artefact with an artistic work, imagining and shaping its history - in addition to the actual historical events. (werktitel : unbekannt) is about moments of remembrance and representation, about the tension between reality and fiction as an associative process, as well as working through forgetting. A dialogue between past, present and speculative future. The future conceived in the plural. The box goes, the memory remains.
texts by Ada Karlbauer
10.09.22, Photo credits: Tobias Ehrhardt
More information under: werktitelunbekannt.com