Understanding Memories

March 4, 2015 9:04 pm Published by

Understanding Memories

Collaboration: 2015
A 90 page art book and CD with sections designed by Sylvana dAngelo Anezka Minarikova, Pavel Fric and Michaela Labudova and sound piece by Lauren Marsden. This publication was created to document the works and ideas surrounding the exhibition ‘Behind the Wall, In Front of the Wall’ at Unit/Pitt. Published with the support of the Canadian Council, distributed through Publication Studio in Vancouver and part of the UJEP University permanent collection in Prague, Czech Republic.




Through a series of interviews Sylvana d’Angelo got to know the last three generations of her family and asked everyone to send items describing their shared experiences. Despite their drastically different lifestyles and beliefs they all convey similar responses. What emerges is a three-generation struggle with immigration and integration leading to a retreat into religious faith, and separation from the secular world, despite the freedom of choice offered by Western society. The items and text in this collection embody an experience with restriction and separation, viewed from the perspective of five family members.

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Anezka Minarikova‘s design contribution is a self-reflection and contemplation of the impact of mapping her family history in the context of the political and historical events of the second half of the 20th century in the Czech Republic. Personal objects bear an imprint of family members’ lives. The items that no longer serve their original purpose are witnesses of forgotten conversations and events, and as such they become artifacts. The single items are illustrations of memories and emotions, together forming a whole containing several decades of family history. These personal histories exist against the backdrop of national struggle and transformation, and also comprise the curator’s journey of self-knowledge through knowledge of familial, national, and global histories.


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