The Action Phase
The idea of including “guides” is founded in the hypothesis that unseen, undiscussed topics are conditioned by cultural and contextual circumstances. Against this background, the conceptual preparation of the project started through a phase of dialogue in which the Mapping the Unseen Team approached people who came to Austria, because of political developments or for economic reasons. These people live(d) in Austria, but their former place of residence or country of origin is located elsewhere. Their story will be the link to an artist in their former place of residence as the project is realised.The three participating guides told their story, why they came to Austria and which connection to artists they have in their former place of residence. By this, they became threads that now weave through the whole project. The involvement of the artists is the basis to start the next dialogue phase: the talk with the group to identify a marginalised topic in the cultural context of the respective country of origin of the guides. After the partners have given their consent to be in the project, they decide which topic they will select. Then they will start to create their contribution according to the chosen topic. If the produced art will be their own, or is merely curated by them, lies within their own decisions.
A performance-series set in these vacant premises (rooms) will first take place in the countries/regions where the participating art groups are found (Iran/Croatia/Bangladesh). These analog Mappings offer a five to seven day program which is accessible to the public and include installations, theatres and shows as well as discussions. Then parts of it will be transferred to Austria, to the city where the respective guide lives now. Also here, empty, vacated sales rooms or business offices will be secured to host the respective productions. At this stage the program in Austria will be enhanced with audience and expert discussions as well as workshops that specifically encourage intercultural exchange. For this purpose, Austrian contemporary artists and researchers, who work on the same topics, will be invited to exhibit their work and offer theoretical contributions to the discourse.