Home Taxidermy

2018-2019. Wood, paper, concrete, pulleys, ropes spring links. Dimensions variable. 

ZK/U (Center for Art and Urbanism), Berlin.

 

HOME TAXIDERMY is an ongoing project that looks at attempts of individuals and communities to rebuild their homes in a new place, and asks questions about the possibilities of preservation and restoration in the context of home and identity. 

HOME TAXIDERMY: FLOOR is an interactive architectural installation, designed first for the artist's lodging at ZK/U, and later for its basement. It is inspired by the use and production of decorated tiles – a style first brought to Europe with the Moors in the 8th century, and later brought “back” to Palestine by German Templers as the modern technique of concrete tiles. This technique spread widely in the area, and while having a significant role in the industrial colonization of Palestine, it also slowly became recognized as vernacular, symbolizing an old building style, pre-dating the Israeli state.

 

HOME TAXIDERMY: FLOOR consists of a layer of movable decorated tiles, a layer of concrete slabs, and the basement floor, upon which the piece lies. The movable tiles are connected to ropes and pulleys; on the concrete slabs is a drawing of a floor plan, hidden by the tiles and partially revealed when they are moved; the basement of the ZK/U was used in World War Two as a weapon storage by the Nazis. Close by is Gleis 69, a railroad track from which many of Berlin Jews were deported to Auschwitz, among them the great grandparents of the artist. The floor plan on the concrete slabs is of an apartment in an old Templer house in Jerusalem, in which the artist used to live. With this in mind, the act of moving the floor becomes an act of revealing layers of history and identity.

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