The Autonomy of Everyday Items (2010)

PhD final project installation, 42m²
digital photography (banners and slide-shows)
self-designed pillows (40x40cm)
real furniture from 70’s
advisor: dr hab. Zdzisław Mackiewicz
Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, Poland

The Autonomy of Everyday Items Thesis PL (pdf)
Visual concept (pdf)

This final PhD project is a reflection on our relations with various objects collected and kept at home for years. Items develop new meanings through their long-term relations with owners. These meanings change as people change during their lives. What we eventually see are objects, but in our minds they become something more: astonishing reservoirs of memories and the most amazing stories of individuals.

A reflection on material culture, memories, individual life stories, society, and history became the most important aspect of my PhD project. Myself, I have collected hundreds of photographs of old-fashioned apartments and houses. Then I used some of them to create an archetypical interior built out of printed images attached to a wooden construction. Four video streams projecting on 3 walls of the installation and on a table gave an impression of passing time. The space made of and at the same time filled with both printed and real items became a metaphorical temple of human memories. When entering the installation, one’s memories were quickly coming back and inviting to share memories. Visitors were recognizing specific objects and telling different stories reminded by them.

Poster by N. Pręgowski