OMA Projekt

two channel-installation DV 4:3  (14 min)

OMA deals with some of the stories I heard about the women in my family, their migration from Austria to Brazil escaping poor living conditions in the aftermath of the First World War, and the continuation of their precarity in the promised paradise land. 

The videos are shown on two vintage TV sets. The character that gives the title to this project, Oma, my grandmother, had two TVs in her living room, which she used to watch simultaneously, often to keep up with any shows she had missed out and recorded.

A chair, a lamp, and a small side table with pen and paper complete the installation, thus recreating the setting where Oma would take notes about the movies, soap operas and other shows she watched.

The protagonists of this work are the women in my family. Some of their names are fictional, descriptive, while others are real. Their life stories are told from their perspective, focusing on their dreams, experiences, social conditions and their struggle against the limits imposed on them by society and reality. The use of text, the interplay of color, intensity and font styles as well as grammar rules, emphasize the roles and experiences of the characters.

While these stories unfold throughout the 20th century, from the interwar period to my childhood, they still deal with very contemporary issues: migration, precarious conditions of life, media influence, colonized behavior, among others. The sound design, combined with the old stories and the furniture installation aim for a certain atemporality of the work.

The material I use to tell these stories comprises original documents as well as reinterpreted/reinvented ones. I am not certain these to be veridical. There is no systematic research, no indisputable proof, nothing is certain. Like oral traditions or secret family recipes which are passed down through generations.

Diploma Arbeit, Akademie der bildenden Kunst Wien, 2021