Counter-Monument and Counter-Memory - A Workshop at the Trondheim Academy of Fine Art
The counter-monument has been theorized as a project that keeps faith with history’s victims by keeping questions of memory unresolved; in the words of James Young, “the best German memorial to the fascist era and its victims may not be a single memorial at all, but simply the never-to-be-resolved debate over which kind of memory to preserve, how to do it, in whose name, and to what end.” What assumptions are propositions like these based upon? What politics do propositions like these assume and advance? And does connecting with what Walter Benjamin called “the tradition of the oppressed” allow us to reanimate the counter-monument and open it to new politics and other memories? In this workshop, through collective close readings of some theoretical texts and artistic projects, we will attempt to work through these questions, along with questions that participants in the workshop bring to our table.
This workshop takes place in the context of the Politics of Memory program
Andrew Herscher is Associate Professor at the University of Michigan with appointments in the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Department of the History of Art, and Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures. His work explores modern and contemporary spatial culture, concentrating on spatial formations of political conflict and dissent, humanitarian and human rights issues, cultural memory and counter-memory, and collective identity. His work has an impact not only on architecture but also on the field of contemporary art. He is the author of Violence Taking Place: The Architecture of the Kosovo Conflict (Stanford University Press, 2010) and The Unreal Estate Guide to Detroit (University of Michigan Press, 2012) and the forthcoming Regarding the Genocide of Others: Geospatial Witnessing and Crimes Against Telehumanity.He is also currently working on the housing question as it has historically developed in and across humanitarianism and architecture.