As »invisible Zürichs« was coming to an end, the question we kept getting from the participants of our workshops and visitors to the stadtARCHIV was: »What will happen with the archive when the project is over?«
This was an important question, because the archive is as much for the future as it is for the past. It points to all the things we would like to keep in our memory, that we want future generations to know, things that are important to us, things that are peculiar and worth documenting, things from the present that may help us envision or re-think our future. It was important to emphasize this future aspect of the archive, and therefore we invited a handful of artists to help us work with the content of the archive. The task was to create artistic interpretations of how this material could point to a possible future for Zurich. The artworks that came out of it were the following:
Nina Lund Westerdahl scanned a series of objects that could be found in the archive. She particularly focused on a collection of jam-jars in which the participants of the workshops had »conserved« elements of Zurich. By scanning tactile objects, Nina questioned the digitalizing of archives and the priority of pictures and text-based documents in much archival practice. The resulting scans explore the interface between what is lost when turning objects into printed documents, and also what can be gained.
Sabeth Tödtli and Dominik Fornezzi built a labyrinth out of the card-board boxes, labels, written notes, pictures and objects that constituted the material of the archive. The labyrinth ended up in a cave-like construction with the room for two people to sit down and have a look at all the material surrounding them. In the middle of the »cave« a so-called »what-if hat« was hanging from the roof. Visitors were invited to put on the hat and use the flash light hanging besid it to light up the different things they would want to investigate closer. The labyrinth was based on the invisible Zürichs motto: »Ich bin verdichtete Möglichkeit und gestapelte Zukunft«.
Ildi Serako made an installation of a warm winter coat hovering over the archive. The inside of the coat was filled with pictures from the archive. Ildi wanted to depict the kindness and warmth of the city and its memories, how it may protect us from the cold, and also how it may lift and guide us into an unknown future.
Other artistic contributions by Cecilie Sachs Olsen, Brandon Farnsworth, Mirjam Wirz