[spectre] Building Memory: four films about architecture, monuments, and community

Inke Arns inke.arns at snafu.de
Tue Dec 15 19:16:54 CET 2009


BUILDING MEMORY: four films about architecture, monuments, and community
Miroslaw Balka (PL), Yael Bartana (IL/NL), Deimantas Narkevicius  
(LT), Marcel Odenbach (DE)

Contemporary Art Centre (CAC), Vilnius
December 11, 2009 – February 14, 2010

The Contemporary Art Centre (CAC), Vilnius is excited to launch the  
exhibition Building Memory that is responsible for commissioning new  
moving image works from four of Europe's most renowned artists. The  
project is a collaboration between the CAC, Vilnius (Lithuania);  
Hartware MedienKunstVerein, Dortmund (Germany); Muzeum Sztuki, Lodz  
(Poland); Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, Herzliya (Israel); and  
the Goethe Institut, Warsaw (Poland).

The artworks in Building Memory explore different aspects of 60 years  
of Europe's most problematic and contested history from a focus on  
architecture, monuments, and community and geo-political perspectives  
in Poland, the former-DDR (East Germany), and with reference to the  
foundation of the state ofIsrael. Three of the works are haunted by  
the specter of the Holocaust and all of them are conceptually sited  
within post-communist space – so are especially relevant to current  
cultural debates in Lithuania. (And will be equally engaging and  
discursive when exhibited at the partner institutions inGermany,  
Poland, and Israel).

Much has been written in the field of the comparative social sciences  
and humanities about the competing narratives of historical trauma –  
and the dialectical compass assessing human tragedies animated by  
Nazism and Soviet Stalinism plus a range of Imperialist and  
colonialist projects in a host of territories (from Africa, to  
America, to Ireland, to the Levant). The four works in Building  
Memory touch on aspects of these debates and furnish their audiences  
with human – in some instances positive, humorous, and ironical –  
dramas on the theme that allow for personal reminiscence and  

Acknowledging the personal and individuated dimensions of larger, and  
collective, history is an important characteristic of contemporary  
art and one of the ways that it can contribute to what is often  
called "memory work". This exhibition hopes to make an important  
contribution to this process and lend a perspective to the unraveling  
of memory associated with this psycho-geographical territory in the  

In addition to the exhibition partners the artists' works have been  
generously assisted by a number of leading institutions. Yael  
Bartana's Wall and Tower(2009) received support from Muzeum Sztuki  
Nowoczesnej (MSN) Warsaw and the Museum of the History of the Polish  
Jews (Warsaw). And Deimantas Narkevicius' Into the Unknown (2009) is  
a commission by the British Film Institute (BFI), London, and the  
Hartware MedienKunstVerein (HMKV) Dortmund – and was first screened  
at the BFI Southbank Gallery in September.

The Building Memory curatorium is made-up of: Inke Arns, Dortmund;  
Elisabetta Fabrizi, London; Maria Morzuch and Jarosław Suchan, Lodz;  
Marcel Odenbach, Cologne; Simon Rees, Vilnius; Diana Shoef, Herzliya;  
and Martin Waelde, Warsaw

The exhibition will travel to the partner institutions throughout  
2010 and will be accompanied by a scholarly publication to be  
published in May 2010.

More details about the artists, artworks, exhibition, special  
screening events, and tour dates can be found at the special project  


Contemporary Art Centre
Vokieciu 2, LT - 01130, Vilnius
tel: +3705 2121954, fax: +3705 2623954
email: info at cac.lt // www.cac.lt

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