The installation Vague is a kind of observation point. Visitors look through plates of glass whose opacity is constantly changing and try to piece together the scattered parts of a panoramic view of the mountains in the Fanes-Sennes-Prags Nature Park in the Dolomites. This deconstruction of a typical tourist observation point is meant to jostle viewers into meditation on the theme of Heimat.

Heimat is something elusive, such as the memories of places one comes from when looked back upon again later and having already become a different person. It can never be represented as a whole, but rather is a combination of disparate and sometimes independent fragments of memories that we somehow merge together, creating a picture that is shimmering and nebulous and blurry. When viewed from a distance, it keeps its outline, but you never know if this amalgamation of different components is objectively true or not.

Vague represents homeland or Heimat as an image in which some parts always remain blurred and sundry, much like a memory. The visual components, fragmentation, instability and generalization of an image (Vorstellung) that only exist in one's imagination set the shape and effect of the installation. By surrounding the viewer with a belt of transparent pieces with constantly changing opacity, we are trying to achieve the sense of being immersed in oneself—a sensation that is familiar to anyone who has tried to catch a memory in its entirety.

Some images can be very familiar and emotionally close to us, while at the same time not having clear visual boundaries. When we recall distant childhood impressions or places and images that have importance to us, this brings both flashes of eidetic images as well as hazy pictures. One can do this endlessly, but no matter how hard you look some blurriness remains next to the clear parts, sometimes at the periphery of the vision and sometimes right in its very center. This elusive feeling colors the observed panorama with subjectivity and transforms matter into an idea, which is the essence of a memory—withdrawing into oneself (Erinnerung).


  • Concept, production and video: VOLNA
  • Engineering: Alexey Belyakov
  • Special thanks: Viktor Smolensky, Justina Fink, William Cohen, Alexander Felch, Max Mutschlechner, Sergey Vinogradov, Moritz Trebo
  • Commissioned by SMACH. Constellation of art, culture & history in the Dolomites
  • © VOLNA (2019)
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