PRINT December 2006

Rita Kersting

1 Thomas Hirschhorn, Altar for Ingeborg Bachmann (Alexanderplatz subway station, Berlin) Hirschhorn used the vocabulary of street memorials—cuddly toys, candles, and collages of photographs and texts—to create this secular altar dedicated to the Austrian writer Ingeborg Bachmann, who died in Rome in 1973. The incredible power of this work lay in its combination of reflection, personal affection, and Pop gesture. Initially wondering if someone had passed away in the station, people started reading Bachmann’s subtle, philosophical poems, quotations from which were included in the work, along with her books themselves. Death is Bachmann’s central theme, and Hirschhorn took it up with bravura, interrupting people’s journeys to take them where they had not intended to go.

2 Tacita Dean, “Analogue” (Schaulager, Basel) Much of Dean’s work from the past fifteen years portrays processes

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