WEIMAR WECKER
In collaboration with Li-Shih Chen
Interactive sound installation, video documentation
Weimar, Germany
2009

In an interview for its geographer readers, Michel Foucault mentioned the map as an instrument of power/ knowledge. With strategical applications of measure, inquiry and examination, behind a mapping process, shaping of time and space is a structure of power.
During the research in city archive, a photo caught our attention. Therein is a smiling girl holding a row of mass-produced clocks. Each of them is labeled Weimar. That was the first, fortunate encounter with what we attempt to commemorate: Uhrenwerk Weimar, a lost mark on the city map and city history.
When we found the former site of the factory, all we can see is a colossal wall relics and vast area covered with piles of bricks and concrete lumps. The giant materiality and its timeless beauty already speak for itself, so our first act is to build an interactive sound installation. The sounds are recorded from the ticks and alarms of those old clocks, try to put the relics back into the context of time, and also connect to everyday life experience for audience.
The second act is to find and invite people who used to work there to tell their story in the factory. Imaging the depth it is supposed to dig into the life world in the city, the process took most of our time and energy. However, with participation of local people and collaboration with brilliant partners, this process becomes the most productive part of this project.
The meaning of Weimar Wecker is not limited in to wake up an alternative memory, though we do wonder why a factory could not win a visibility in public memory in proportion to such scale since it was the largest state enterprise during GDR time in Weimar.
Rather than it, we attempted to turn our sight to a more basic level that is – to wake up peoples interest of storytelling. These actions should not only be the link between the public memory and aspects of daily life in final result, but also fix in the process of history or public memory forming.

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