Among the Present of Absentee

Prohelvetia, iaab, Basel, 2011

This project attempted to symbolically re-inscribe the obscured or repurposed spaces of home-based silk ribbon production in Basel, spaces that carry memories of collective industrial practices that no longer exist. Often the workers involved in such spaces / practices become invisible, their contributions undocumented and unacknowledged, forced into the margins of public knowledge and the anonymous cycles of historical change. In the case of home-based silk ribbon production, the women workers literally could not separate their public (production) and private (family) life, as their household domains were also their work sites. Hence the installation was created within the iaab studio, where we worked as well as lived. The installation simultaneously incarnates and abstracts the enforced merging of public and private space, as well as the fusion of the ‘professional life’ and ‘personal life’ of the worker compelled to inhabit two identities through inhabiting one space.

Installation with ribbons, toilet papers and watermarks.

installation images