Track Record

British artist Darren Almond is renowned for his works dealing with time and its passage, and themes of personal and historical memory. Track Record is a video documentation of the 2005 work Terminus, an installation that relocated 14 socialist-era bus stops from the Polish town of Oswiecim (in German Auschwitz) into a gallery space in Berlin.

Through one long tracking shot, the camera moves across a room capturing dislocated bus stations that stand empty and abandoned. In a steady movement, we are led past the stations in mimicry of a bus route, an eerie journey, empty of human life. The movie plays in silence, accompanied only by a subtle undefined background sound of the camera moving about the building. The technique applied to film the work is used to highlight the fact that what we see is a testimony to a fact - to 14 bus stations from Auschwitz - not an interpretation.

Almond is fascinated by culturally specific points of arrival and departure and the means by which we reach these points, and how we understand them in time. Track Record is not only a record of the artist's own work - of an installation that no longer exists - but a record of a historical loss - that of Auschwitz. The history is brought into our own world by mere fact of association: the bus stations. The latter are a temporary stop, a hypothetical point in time during a potential journey towards the "real" location - the camp itself. They have nothing to do with the actual camp or its history. And yet, we are unable to view them as anything but the historic memory itself: the bus stations transport us instantly towards the "real" location and into the collective memory.

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Track Recordby Darren Almond

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