Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Art of Memory - 12

The Decay of Time: Memory and Erasure
Klein, N. M. "Forgetfulness and Thunder" in Art & Text, no. 56, Feb-Apr., 1997.
Huyssen, A. "Monuments and Holocaust memory in an media age". Twilight Memories", Marking time in a culture of Amnesia, new York/London: Routeledge, 1998.
Smithson, R. " A tour of monuments of Passaic, New Jersey" in Wallis, B. (ed.) Blasted Allegories: An anthology of Writing by Contemporary Artists, Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1987.

Klein talks about the Imago as the strongest residues of memory left over from a collective imaginary projection of an event or popular story. Which reminds me of a trope often used in fiction, specifically that of the genre that has become known as "Urban fantasy". A few writers spring to mind, specifically Robert Holdstock (1948-2009) who adapted the word to Mythago. His mythago's were the manifestations of our amalgamated imaginations given life (not necessarily sweet). A "social imaginary" of the characters portrayed in myths and legends. Charles de Lint in a similar vein has characters created out of books, the stronger 'Edar' are those from books most read and remembered. As social memory of these characters fade so does their existence.

In this process of social/ collective remembering and erasure, the imago's of a particular society reveal the hopes and fears, nightmares and dreams of the collective. A case ready for collective psychoanalysis.

Artists mentioned in today's lecture:

Matthew Buckingham. Image of Absalon to be projected until it vanishes (2001)

Tim Silver. (Coming round again) (2009)

Tim Silver. (Rory) (2009)

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