The present seems to flow ceaselessly through the tiny sliver of memory nature allotted us—memories we try to hold onto (if only for a moment) in their vast immensity. It is this ineptness of memory, the apparent smallness of it, that has motivated people throughout history to try and capture it with more permanent and capable mediums. We attempt to hold on to the artifacts of experience by inscribing them on everything around us—on cave walls, stone tablets, animal hides, trees, electrical currents, even the binary spins of electrons themselves.
In Place of Forgetting is an interactive multi-channel audio-visual installation exploring the contemporary overabundance of memory and its impact on the quality of the experiences we attempt to remember. With each repost, recontextualization, reiteration, or translation, a connection to the original moment is further obscured. Viewers traverse this sense of iterative loss through their physical interactions, shaping their experience by sifting through and reassembling text and images sourced from an archive of historical Cincinnati postcards collected by Mark Rohling, Senior Exhibition Designer/Chief Preparator at the Taft Museum of Art. By influencing which fragments of the audio archive are amplified through their action, the visitors evoke new and unique relationships between them, continuously transforming their context. One box tells a story, while its companions speak in counterpoint and a pair on the side hold a conversation. A trio sing in harmony together, their voices echoing the marks of handwriting scribed on the back of each postcard.
Intermedio also presents Mid-Day Ghost, a collaborative composition combining spoken word, stories, and experimental vocal sounds with interactive multichannel audio, performed by multi-instrumentalist/vocalist Jennifer Simone and saxophonist Om Srivastava. Through interactions with the installation In Place of Forgetting, Mid-Day Ghost explores the ephemerality of our contemporary experiences and how they are shaped by memories of the past—what we keep and what we leave behind.