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sound- and spacial installation

Hausen im Wiesental, 2020

Four old beds, brought from an attic to a field and river, accompanied, held and questioned by a sound composition in four parts and transparent fabric treated with beeswax: Gebettet invites to the zone of time and sleep – asking questions about the permeability of time, simultaneity and the connection between past, present and future.


How are we embedded within time?

Four beds, stored in an attic for decades, unused and seemingly unusable. Again and again the question arises: why are they still here? Obviously they are not to be thrown away, but sleeping in them also seems impossible. What surrounds these beds, what do they carry, what might they tell us?

Gebettet follows an impulse to bring the beds out into the open, but without returning them to their function as a space for sleeping. Instead, they have become a different space which poses questions about the connection between past, present and future. A space that creates a connection between the experience of those who perceiving the beds now and those who have slept in them - they are unknown to us and yet we know sleep. Within the experience of sleep, a different perception of time emerges: in falling asleep and dreaming, continuity and linearity seem suspended. Sleep - private and universal at the same time - encompasses a special relationship to time, one in which time becomes permeable.

The four beds are accompanied by a sound composition and transparent fabric treated with beeswax. The beeswax was made by the bees of a beehive on the site of the installation. The fabrics are an invitation to perceive the particularities of each bed, to engage with what the old beds hold. They give space and care to their traces. The sound composition combines a melody of four basic notes with sounds from the surroundings. For the composition, sounds were chosen that are not specific to the present time, but were already heard at other times in the surroundings of the sleepers, embedding them.

During our work in Hausen, we started reading a young woman’s unpublished diary to each other, which was found on the same attic as the three beds. She was born in 1891 in Hausen im Wiesental and wrote her diary from 10th May 1907 to 30th June 1913. Quite unexpectedly her writing became part of our work and is now part of the otherwise non-linguistic composition. Carried by a contemporary voice, partly intelligible and blurred as if in a dream, barely audible, excerpts from the diary allow us small glimpses into a past Hausen life and at the same time show connections to our experiences today.

Gebettet invites visitors and passers-by to perceive the beds with what they bring with them and what surrounds them.


/ Sarah Drain und Mariam Frick

/ in cooperation with: Gemeinde Hausen i. W., Kunstverein Schopfheim

/ public space in Hausen im Wiesental, near the river Wiese

/ supported by: LBBW-Stiftung, Gemeinde Hausen i. W., Sparkasse Wiesental, VR-Bank eG Schopfheim-Maulburg, Imkerei Nagy
/ materials: four beds (from around 1890-1900), cotton fabric, beeswax, aluminum

/ audio: 3', 4', 6', 4'

/ photo: (c) Drain

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