DériveLab / Heterotopia; C4CC, University of London

MyMementoVid / Heterotopia, Amir Cohen

The MyMementoVid project was first presented during the 2009 Venice Biennale International Art Exhibition. The project continues to evolve as a conceptual environment, expressing contents that are based on personal memory, and that have the capacity to strengthen dialog that is unaffected by place or time.

Video was the chosen medium for this project, with the challenge being to create artworks lasting 1 minute at the most. These factors allowing the clips to be deconstructed in order to expose the message of the artists involved. The memory capsules are created by different artists, but presented as parts of a continuum that expresses the face of everyone – a constructive human expression.

Presenting the project in Venice as an installation invited the audience to take part in the personal expression of the creators, and to enter the cultural state based on the three circles.

The First Circle – Creates a sound envelope that simulates the external environment in urban space.

The Second Circle – Borrowed from a different time and space, emphasized by positioning the viewer in a way they have not chosen.

Both of these surround a third, inner circle, as a contrast to the isolation each viewer/participant can choose by using headsets. The project was tailored to the space in which it was presented.

The concept that formed the base of this project, MyMementoVid, was largely focused due to an immensely productive dialog with the Heterotopia project (DériveLab 1+2) in collaboration with artists Paul Malone and Nicola Rae.

The MyMementoVid project was also invited to present in London, and artists were chosen who would give special expression to the social influences of the specific place and time period. A unique examination of the personal memory concept was carried out by students of the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, who were also invited to present their proposal and take part in the project.

Among the most interesting interpretations of the project was to use the documentation/film like a mirror. It therefore created areas that do not exist in practical reality, but are stored in the memory – a concept that led some of the students/creators to a ritual state where purity exists – an unbiased expression of a concrete social idea. This state, the non-existence of space, absorbs the personal memory, which is then transformed into a functional, conceptual tool.

The aftermath of the idea, Heterotopia, which formed the basis of the international project, was shown in London at the Centre for Creative Collaboration (C4CC).

The concept at the root of the MyMementoVid project has been hugely strengthened, creating a multicultural platform. We are creating a continuous project that is a place without a place, an immeasurable environment that is therefore incredibly resilient. This is a system in which many memories intersect and create ideas and varied cultural attitudes. Isolation of the physical urban dimension (eliminating physical belonging) leads to a dominant multicultural human dimension, and contributes to the development of independent ideas.