Text and concept: Sønke Gau / Katharina Schlieben
October 2008 – July 2009
A project by Shedhalle
The project series “Translation Paradoxes and Misunderstandings” is divided into three chapters. As its starting point (October – December 2008) it shall take linguistic-political considerations on ‘multilinguality’ on the one hand, while investigating on the other to what extent this also affects the ‘polyphony’ and if the affects are similar or vary. This line of approach is necessary because the translation problematic, translation paradoxes and inventing languages are not only prevalent when bridging linguistic divides, but are also evident within languages themselves. Furthermore, when exploring translation we shall not just proceed from spoken language, but look into the modus of translation in itself, which is inscribed into intersubjective understanding/conflict as well as in transcontextual and intermedia relations. Artistic works and films will be shown which explore the question of the (im-) possibility of translation as well as (un-) productive misunderstandings. As part of a commentary level, authors or scientists proposed by the participating artists were asked to write a short text about the contents and questions of the respective work in their native language. Besides the interpretative/mediating aspects, a double translation movement is already at work on this level: on the one hand, artistic work is translated into the medium of writing, while the texts will be translated from the languages in which they are written into English on the other. A following exhibition shall specify the issues sketched out in the first exhibition. A more detailed consideration of the multilingual Swiss situation and micro researches about minority languages and regions in Europe is in discussion (February – April 2009). In a further step we would like to bring the crux of and the question about curatorial translation into play. We aim to conclude the series with an international conference and exhibition devoted to this field of practice and discourse (June – July 2009).