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andrea geyer

Reference Over Time. 2004. video, 19:14 minutes

© Sammlung Generali Foundation, Wien

In the summer of 2004, a government leak revealed the proposed PATRIOT 2 legislation, which suggested to give the US government the power to denationalize unwanted citizen. The video Reference over Time responds to this proposition by re-visiting Bertold Brecht's 1940 text Conversations Among Refugees. In the video an actress is rehearsing this text written by Brecht in exile. It describes the conversation between two characters, one white collar, one working class (suggested to be both alter egos of Brecht himself) who both lost their citizenship and accidentally meet in exile, at the restaurant at the train station in Helsingfor, Norway. As refugees, conversation has become their main occupation. The actress struggles to find an appropriate tone for this conversation, its historical critic and meaning within the present moment, given that historical moments never exactly repeat, yet do and should resonate for us continuously.

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