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Things to Come

Curator: Doreet LeVitte Harten, co-curator: Avshalom Suliman 14.4.2016 - 20.8.2016

Yuki Onna is the Ghost in the Machine is concerned with the potential embedded in a repressed memory or a dream which resurfaces into the conscious mind. Is it possible to perfectly retrieve a memory as it is done by digital memory-machines (computers)? When a memory resurfaces from our consciousness' repressed area, the movement of its mechanism in itself produces a deviation, and the memory, dream, or some aspects of them, change. The remembering-apparatus is part of the memory, and the act of remembering in itself causes it to morph.
Yuki Onna ("The Snow Woman") is a Japanese ghost story in a collection entitled Kwaidan ("Ghosts"). In a stormy night in the woods, Minokichi the lumberjack comes across the dreadful snow-woman who agrees to spare his life, on condition that he will never talk
about her. He keeps their secret until one night, years later, he suddenly remembers the incident and recounts the story to his wife.
The work is a machine that displays a play in three acts, each presented on a different stage, which unfolds the story of Yuki Onna. Both the different stages and what is presented on them are made from phosphorescent paper sensitive to light, so that they function as light-absorbing screens and at the same time as shadow-casting objects. The entire apparatus accumulates light and shadow when in its folded form and, when the play unfolds and becomes visible, shadows spread out as images drift away from their origins in a regular rhythmic cycle. The architecture, mechanics, and materials of this work produce countless points of deviation through which memory escapes, in the dead of the mind’s night.


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