A window in the house of my father


Banska Bystrica 2019

My work refers to the past, physical and mental spaces that I and my family have entered and that have become fundamental to my life. In this installation, I tell stories of merging and describe ab- stract and emotional places of my past. The starting point of my concept are metaphorical bound- aries, exclusions and locations. I describe physical places like my father’s house in a Roma Gheto, the orphanage where I lived for eighteen years, or the prison where my father spent many years.

Besides the physical places, the mental places get an important role. They become the guideline of my installation, through which the viewer is to be guided metaphorically. In these irrationally charged spaces I have tried to merge with reality emotionally and often very painfully.

With exhibited objects, photos and drawings, I mark important places, times and situations that have become important for my life. The complexly created exhibition image is intended to open up completely new questions and form a new perspective through the autobiographical narratives. Above all the dysfunctions of a society are questioned, conceived by hierarchical classifcations and dealt with without our consent. Herwith I build new narratives, without false and cliché attribu- tions about my ethnic group, my family and about myself.

I call them coerce places and artifcially created places of education.

The central work is a large format photo of a model of my father’s house. The viewer understands only on closer inspection that the room is not real. The meticulously crafted miniature I built in 2010,after which I visited my biological family for the rst time. I have recreated this memory in a small proportion, depicting a ctitious, dramatic scene, caused by fire. Exactly this scene actually happened years later. In February 2019, my father Edo Gabris burned to death in this house.

On the wall a drawing is installed, that Edo has drawn for me in the prison of Banska Bystrica. My“ ctional father”, whom I knew only through his pathetic and almost pathologically written letters,became my rolemodel and inspiration for my future career.
There is a glass box in the room and my father’s rst letter, which he sent to the children’s homewhen I was 14 years old. In it he tries to explains in a very magical way, why I was not allowed to grow up at home. Next to his letter is a photo, the only proof from my childhood - a motionless and hopeless state.

A window in the house of my father, replica of model 1:20, Vienna 2012

I knitted the wedding gowns for me and my future husband as a dowry. I knitted them by myself, as I didn't have a grandmother.

Installation, two knitted costumes, laguage

Reykjavik 2010