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Adrian Paci, Sue proprie mani (Open by Addressee Only) (detail), 2015, five-channel HD video (color, sound, 17 minutes 25 seconds), twelve framed envelope facsimiles, three vitrines containing approximately one hundred letter facsimiles. Photo: Sabrina Brunner.

Adrian Paci

Galerie Peter Kilchmann

Adrian Paci, Sue proprie mani (Open by Addressee Only) (detail), 2015, five-channel HD video (color, sound, 17 minutes 25 seconds), twelve framed envelope facsimiles, three vitrines containing approximately one hundred letter facsimiles. Photo: Sabrina Brunner.

Adrian Paci’s timing has been, unfortunately, good. Long concerned with migration, exile, and nostalgia, his works touch the raw nerves of our day. No one who’s seen it is likely to forget, for instance, his video Centro di permanenza temporanea (Temporary Shelter Center), 2007, which depicts scores of people stranded on a movable staircase on an airport runway, hoodwinked into waiting for a promised plane that never comes.

Paci’s new video installation Sue proprie mani (Open by Addressee Only), 2015, a collaboration with Roland Sejko, is based on a chance discovery in the Albanian National Archives. On a recent visit there, a journalist found two jute sacks containing hundreds of undelivered letters dating from between 1945 and 1946—material traces of the presence in Albania of some twenty-four thousand Italians who arrived during the Fascist occupation that began in 1939;

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