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Stepping through gauzy curtains (Credit: Clara Fung, Institute for Art and Architecture, University of Fine Arts, Vienna)

Spatial memory is a term often used to describe the neurological process of recalling where something happened or where an object was placed. This type of memory is also used to project into the future, to plan a route to a desired location.

It is hard to consider spatial memory without invoking a poetic light. What is this intangible part of us that is tied to places and our memories of them? How is it that we can still recall the layout of a childhood home despite not having stepped foot in it in years?

The themes of the “Tread Softly” exhibit included “the city, migration, and memory”. The title is an allusion to the W.B. Yeats poem, “The Cloths of Heaven”, where he writes, “Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.” [*1] It considered how the cities we live in become the space in which we operate, tenderly attending to ideas of spatial memories, among others.

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A poem in two parts.

Pt. I

I was born to this old and broken house

and now it sits, aflame,

and I weep.

we live in a mostly burning neighborhood;

we watch as we set our own fires;

we know we have been swimming in gasoline

since we moved in.

“why are you shocked?”

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The following poem is an extract from the chapbook
metaphors, metonymies, & anthropomorphisms. It is published here with the kind permission of the poet, second-year EPST student Alexandria Sisson, in celebration and anticipation of the season to come. 

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This video was made in the context of Paul Festa’s Documentary Filmmaking class. The assignment was to capture an act of artistic creation, so I decided to film selections of a workshop given by Laura Kuhn, who introduced us to John Cage’s chance drawings. In ‘Art by Chance’ I have tried to explore the way chance and control can interact with each other when creating art. The music you hear in the second part is composed by John Cage using the principle of chance here as well.

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3 Days, 3 Hours at Vineta

U Vinetastrasse, where this film was shot over the course of 3 days and 3 hours, was meant to reflect on the impression I had on my part, of the station being one that was somehow more noticeably cold, lonely, stark and quiet. I was taken in by that one constant presence of the bronze sculpture at the station, while everything around it was fluid, taken in, gathered and released by time. It is around that dialogue and conflict between constancy and temporality that this movie was shot, highlighting everyday moments and experiences that signify to the subjects something that is part of a complete, complex construct, something that is lived, lived through, and comes about through having lived already.

The film was made for Paul Festa’s class on documentary film making.

 

Seen By The Blind

First year, first steps and most importantly a whole new phase in life. This short animation is a process within itself. Even though it is only 1 minute and 55 seconds long, I never thought it would be given any importance or there would be someone who appreciated this blink-of-an-eye experience of my first work. There is an idea, there is a thought and definitely an effort, yet I would prefer it to be open and always in the process of growing. It’s all about different phases after all.

This video was made for Claire Lehman’s Conceptual Art class and will be screened at the Boddinale film festival in Berlin on Saturday, February 14th, 2016, 5-11 pm.

 

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Discussion

Students discussing matters of grave importance (credit: Inasa Bibic)

 

Dear all,

it’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, it’s a new semester for all of us and we at Die Bärliner feel more than just good about accompanying you also on the next episode of Bard College Berlin life. We hope you’ll savor on our pages its distinctive blend of effervescent craziness, deep conversations, playful idleness, and homely conviviality. Welcome, and welcome back!

The last semester concluded with debates and reflection on the diversity and lack thereof on our syllabi and the new semester, too, promises many occasions to continue thinking through what we are doing. Michael Weinman called for discussions on Public Seminar and a lively debate has ensued. Soon we will publish a longer article by Tamar Maare based on a series of interviews with BCB graduates in which they reflect on liberal education and the job market, continuing also our long-standing commitment to featuring alumni and alumnae on the blog. Two upcoming events  will offer further occasion to discuss the liberal arts in the contemporary world: the upcoming Berlin Weekend will feature a discussion session dedicated to this topic and a public panel discussion with BCB students and faculty is set for February 12th. More details to follow; save the dates!

Another focus for us this term will be student art. We want to continue publishing poetry regularly, and also aim to include accompanying audio recordings with it. Additionally, we look forward to sharing more visual and especially video art. To start us off we have a series of student short films forthcoming over the first weeks, and you will also find video recordings of guest lectures on the blog in the future (there are already quite a few on our YouTube channel!).

Creative content in all forms will come from our blog team – you can still apply! – but we also would like to use the occasion to call for contributions from everyone. Whether it is a poem for the Slam Poetry Club, a photo series of the neighborhood, or an installation for a practicing arts class, please consider submitting it to the blog. There is a small budget available to compensate your efforts.

Looking forward,

Yours,

David

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