From the synopsis for: Learning from Other Worlds: Estrangement, Cognition, and the Politics of Science Fiction and Utopia (Post-Contemporary Interventions)
About cooking with Mama
In summer 2006 there were already four years without seeing my mom after I left
For me, to involve somebody who is so related to me for so many years into my work via internet is a mixture of many things not that easy to embrace them by using words.
There was such a distance to her, and in spite of my longing to see her it made me quite uncertain how to continue with this digital Mama. Is it her or not? That is what I was asking myself the whole time.
Sure it was Mama, demanding as she used to be, when we were cooking together at home. I was to be polite, listening to her, following the instructions and translating properly her commands to my cooking team (we cook every Friday for the whole academy). Our times in kitchen at home are replaced today with cooking with my friends. Today, the only way I could get back the emotions connected to cooking with her is to contact her through Internet messenger. I felt very intimate with the cooking team, who are good friends of mine. So being in the position of translating a certain food structure which is hundreds years old and is coming from definitely another reality and different way of understanding digitalization, I experienced the extended intimacy of my Moms environment. I was translating from my language to another European language, helping the team to cook what I have been eating for so many years. Sharing this taste with all students of the academy was creating another space which goes beyond the art school as an institution. Its was closeness, about sharing, about understanding the others.
Shklovsky developed the concept of ostranenie or defamiliarization in literature. He explained this idea as follows:
In other words, art presents things in a new, unfamiliar light by way of formal manipulation. This is what is artful about art.
Hiwa K. - Visual artist and musician born in
Aneta Szylak - Curator and art theorist, co-founder and currently director of Wyspa Institute of Art - the intellectual environment for contemporary visual culture - in the former Gdansk Shipyard premises in
The project is planned to capture the tension between Western cultures and what was once constructed as the Orient. Triggered by unfulfilled desire, loss and estrangement, today’s fears, obsessions and denials produced by the discourse of politics and its economic background are both based on those cultural constructions and aimed to destroy them.
Targeting beyond strategies of representation, the project will investigate how those cultures mirror, mimic and reflect one another; how they produce fictions, fragmented comprehensions, readings and hybridist understandings and maybe even more misunderstandings.
The project goes beyond political representations and focuses on emotions it produces. It is a state of mind not a state of things. Adaptations, merges, strategies of mimicry and the lost definitions, will appear in the project as a basis.
Instead of representing and resting on cultural presuppositions, the project is exploring the desired Other, without whom we do not exist. It is investigating curiosities, incompetences and poorly executed communications. It brings imperial conflicts to the level of human emotions and embodiments, it deals with being in each others shoes, learning and constructing the reader of the other though the prosthetic process of translation. It is also challenging the viewer and his or her opinions on “authenticity”, “origin”, “identity”, “representation”.