Travelling from Brandenburg in North-East Germany en route to Turin via Bavaria and Switzerland, myself and Aga Tamiola stopped off in the surreal medieval town of Rothenburg ODT where we sited some more guerilla performances with The LFTT Library and Emergency Kit for Neuro-skeptics.
Our first stop heading south from the Schloss in Brandenburg was in Dresden, capital of the Free State of Saxony. Crossing the bridge over the River Elbe we both let out an audible sigh at the sight of the grand Baroque and Rococo buildings lining the waterfront. Later on in the hotel reading ‘Germany’ by J.F Dickie (TRNS 141) we found that this is a routine response for new visitors entering the city, in fact it is expected. The ‘Germany’ travel guide also told us that Dresden was the home of ‘gemütlichkeit’, an untranslatable german phrase meaning a kind of cosy warm feeling of belonging and social acceptance. We spent our time there in search of this phenomenon.
The LFTT Library collaborated with Polish artist Aga Tamiola and The Emergency Kit for Neuroskeptics at The Schloss Wartin Summer Salon to produce the Language Confusion Clinic; an intimate workshop style ‘clinic’ in the beautiful surrounds of the Castle Wartin estate. Drawing on tools developed at Artists Unlimited, Bielefeld concerning language barriers and mis-translations as productive of intercultural knowledge sharing, and combining this with the neurological interests of Tamiola and the aesthetics of psychiatry – The Language Confusion Clinic employed anti-rational methods to reveal serendipitous associations in thought amongst a group of strangers.
A selection of books from The LFTT Library from differing historical and geographical cultural contexts was made available to the group as a medium of dialogue. This select slice of the archive was paired with the Emergency Kit For Neuroskeptics which added some cross associative poetic flair. Two bells were employed as signals to request a desire to read either from the Library or the Kit. The third bell signalled a wish to personally free associate with the imagery that revealed itself from the texts. During the group session strange tangents rose to the surface of our collective thoughts, enabled by this simple triangular framework.
Within the high academic context of The Schloss Wartin Summer Salon; a project initiated by the Yale University Alumni Club in Germany e.V. and the Collegium Wartinum Foundation, participants of the Language Confusion Clinic expressed a cathartic pleasure in this anti-dogmatic mode of reasoning and social knowledge sharing. The Emergency Kit for Neuroskeptics is a joint project of Aga Tamiola and Sean Erickson.
The second stop on The LFTT Library Translation Tour was at The Schloss Wartin Summer Salon* in Brandenberg, Germany in collaboration with Polish artist Aga Tamiola and Emergency Kit for Neuroskeptics. Billed as ‘a survival kit to help a modern person be more human in a time of neuroscience’ the ‘E-Kit’ is a fragmented poetry anthology re-presented in a neuro-labs slide box, a receptacle which once contained cross section images of rats brains. As literal ‘slices of thought’ the E-Kit’s text fragments (coincidentally of a scale commensurate with the limits of a twitter post) are further employed in sympathy with the early Dadaists as a performance prop, allowing the subconscious thoughts of artist and audience to speak through the medium of the Kit. Read More