Listening Session and Discussion

• Tue 09 07 2019 •
MEMORY LAB #5 Listening as Antiracist Practice – The Acoustic Memory of Migration


Location: Old Pawnshop, Kartäuserwall 20, 50678 Cologne
In german language
Free admission

The gaps in historiography and the hegemonic inscriptions in our (Western, mostly white) discourse of remembrance do not only mean that the minorized groups get little chance to speak – but also that, when they speak, they are not heard. From this perspective, balancing out history is less about speaking than about listening, about dismantling the silencing strategies created by those who institutionally regulate the apparatuses of knowledge. But how can we organize listening? How can listening become a political practice that transcends the ambivalence of “giving a voice”? What do alternative acoustic archives sound like in the migration society? How can they open up narrative echo chambers in the oral history tradition, going against the grain of the official master narrative preserved in the state archives? And how do these migrant echo spaces relate to the left (and also migrant) struggles of the 1970s and 1980s – a time in which the multicultural society was the future inherent in the present?

AYŞE GÜLEÇ is a researching activist and cultural worker in self-organized initiatives in the fields of migration, postcolonialism, anti-racism and art, such as the April 6th initiative and the “Unravelling NSU Complex” Tribunal. She worked as the community liaison at the artistic director’s office of documenta 14 in Kassel. Ayşe Güleç studied social pedagogy at the University of Kassel and started working in the field of migration and (inter-)cultural education at the Schlachthof cultural centre in 1998. She developed the documenta 12 advisory board and was a member of the Maybe Education Group at documenta 13.

In his artistic practice, ACHIM LENGERER deals with the political effects and functions of language and text. In addition to film sound tracks, installations and publications, his forms of expression include performative lectures and events. Lengerer founded various collaborative projects, including the Friday Kitchen in Frankfurt/Main. In 2006, he co-created (with Dani Gal) the project voiceoverhead, which deals with archived spoken language in audio performances, exhibitions and screenings. Lengerer has been operating the mobile exhibition space and publishing house Scriptings since 2009. In his current oral history project Tonspuren zur Linken (Soundtracks on the Radical Left), he traces the connections between left-wing groups in Cologne/the Ruhr region and the migrant struggles since the 1970s.

SEFA INCI SUVAK is a radio journalist, author and cultural editor. Two of her radio contributions received the Civis Media Prize. Together with Justus Herrmann, she initiated and developed the migration-audio-archiv (maa) of Cologne. Nominated for the Grimme Online Award in 2007, it is an oral history collection of narrated migration. She is also a co-founder of the Artradio.

AURORA RODONÒ is a freelance cultural worker in the fields of art, film, migration and anti-racism. She also lectures at the Institute for Art and Art Theory/University of Cologne. From 2012 to 2014, she was a project consultant at the Academy of the Arts of the World; from 2003 to 2006, a research assistant at the research and exhibition venture Project Migration (Cologne 2005). She participates in the initiative 'Unravelling NSU Complex' Tribunal.

The Memory Lab is funded by the Federal Agency for Civic Education/bpb.
A series of events of the Akademie der Künste der Welt in cooperation with DOMiD – Documentation Centre and Museum of Migration in Germany