waschkaue: dividing line

installation and performance 2018

(3 channel video, carbon prints, ceramic objects, text on textile) ​, in collaboration with Karolina Majewska-Guede

exhibition views: MZ Baltazar’s , Vienna 2018, photographs : Sophie Thun

“Waschkaue: a dividing line” is a multi-layered realization that tackles the subject of parallel histories: the invisible history of women’s work and the history of industrialization. It was created as part of a research project carried out at Waschkaue – PACT Choreography Center in Essen in the Ruhr region, on the site of the former Zeche Zollverein mine (1851-1993). Waschkaue was once a changing room and bathhouse in the largest and most modern mine in Europe – the mine’s backstage. It was here that employees changed clothes and put on uniforms; and after work they washed and changed back into daily clothes. The PACT Choreography Center currently operating here has two stages and a number of artistic studios for temporary residences, while the remaining space of the former mine has been transformed into an industry museum documenting the work of miners, assisting animals and the history of coal.

“Waschkaue: a dividing line”  is an intervention in the way of producing history – in this case history of labour; bringing on stage the invisible, obscene work done by women – work that is out of history. Moreover “Waschkaue: a dividing line” uses and incorporates the performance archive, reactivating the impulses present  in feminist works (Maria Pinińska-Bereś) and rewriting from the feminist perspective works constituting “milestones” in the history of performance art in Poland (Tadeusz Kantor).

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