Maya Bamberger, Esther Epstein, Killy Koren, Ronny Koren, Olga Stefan
Maya Bamberger, Esther Epstein, Killy Koren, Ronny Koren, Olga Stefan

Reach to Eat// Dinner #2
April 28, 2019, Zurich

Maya:
There is something so scary, but at the same time fulfilling in cooking for people.

Olga:
Yes, fulfilling. Bus scary? You think that they might not like it?

Maya:
Yes, I always have it.

Olga:
Really?

Ronny:
Especially for people you never cooked for before.

Maya:
Especially for men.

*laughs*

Olga:
I never thought about it that way…

Killy:
Do you usually make Swiss food?

Esther:
I am more inspired by the stuff I have in the fridge.

Maya:
When there is nothing at home… And I have to be so creative…

Esther:
Thats the best! That’s the most inspiring thing – to do something out of nothing.

Ronny:
And you, grew up where?

Olga:
My first few years were in Romania, and then I moved with my parents to Chicago.

Esther:
But you also wanted to immigrate to Israel?…

Olga:
When we left Romania it was still a communist country so the only way for people to leave was if they were minorities. As Jews we were able to ask for a visa to Israel, and Israel was also purchasing Jews. We were able to live – Israel purchased our tickets, our arrangement and facilitated our ability to leave the country and then it just didn’t work out. We were trying to figure out different route and we were stuck in Switzerland.

Esther:
Did you stay in Zurich? Or at the airport?

Olga:
We had a distant relative who had been a war refugee and after the war he was able to come to Switzerland… When we were in Romania we didn’t have contact with anyone who resides outside of Romania so my mom only knew his name and we managed to see him and he helped us to stay here. But the situation was really difficult because we wouldn’t have been able to go back to Romania for at least ten years if he had applied for a refugee status here, until we would have gotten our passport. Then we decided to seek alternatives and we had some family in Chicago who sponsored us and agreed to support us. Those refugee laws that still function now don’t exist in the states.

Maya:
What is the purpose of this law?

Olga:
If you are a refugee the assumption is that it is dangerous in the country of origin. And if it is dangerous you can’t go there because if anything happens to you the Swiss government has to take some action on your behalf and would rather not implicate themselves.

Killy:
So many obstacles.

Olga:
Now it is even more difficult. I have started volunteering for a refugee organisation and one of their programs is to combine a person from Switzerland regardless of their status, a person who resides here with a refugee, and to facilitate this interaction. Maybe the person who lives here can show the refugee around, integrate them in their family, spend time with them etc. I was combined with a young Somali kid – 18 or 19 years old. Interestingly enough he doesn’t know himself how old he is because the birth certificates are not necessarily handed out. That particular issue was a big problem because the Swiss government has implemented laws now that make it more difficult for an adult, which means 18 years old to have asylum here. If you are deemed to be more than 18 years old your refugee status is questioned automatically. They have started implementing these processes to determine whether or not they are 18 by X-raying their body to see how their bones have developed.

Killy:
It’s a period that will be remembered. It is a change. People are moving from one place to another and it is changing the whole balance. It is like how Europe was created by moving tribes…

Esther:
I think it is a constant, slow move. Yesterday I just saw a TV show about how the population from Africa moved to the middle east and from the middle east to Europe.

Olga:
There are waves… We are judging this process in a very short window of history. The 1848 revolution in Europe established the nation states that we currently know. Only in those years we have started talking about the concept of refugees – it is a construct this of the modern period. Once you define a certain category of people… People migrated all the time, but we have never categorised them and counted them because it wasn’t something that was conceptualised as outside of the norm.

Olga:
I am doing a tour of the various spaces of memory of the general strike in 1918 through the eyes of three socialist Jewish women who created the revolution. The three Rosas:

Killi:
Oh… Rosa Luxemburg…

Olga:
Rosa Grimm and Rosa Bloch-Bollag

Killy:
Nachon (True in Hebrew)

Olga: Nachon.

Esther:
So they were working here around Zurich.

Olga:
Yes.

Killy:
OMG the Jewish women.

Esther:
In Zurich there were a lot of interesting Jewish women.

Olga:
They rock! They made everything… I would like to do a doctorate addressing the topic: ‘Why is it that Jewish women were the most progressive women in the European history?’

Esther:
I was asking it myself too because I am doing this ‘Message Salon’ which is the Salon I always wanted to do, and from the beginning I said it is a tribute to Jewish women salon.

(Maya:
Tonight, this is a swish women salon.

Killy:
This is what the two of you do my dear.

Ronny: Yes.

Killy:
It is a very gentle touch.)

Esther:
I was asking myself why I was doing it. I felt connected to this position of a woman with a Jewish background creating this kind of places to come together and I was thinking what is it to me. I was looking for an explanation. I felt like it is something about not feeling really at home because I don’t belong somewhere totally, but to create your own kind of tribe around you. To have a family you created.

Ronny:
Can we quote you?

ME, ME, ME. (ego trip)

People prosternate before you, repeating your name like a mantra.
You are standing there, in the light, a fancy cape on your shoulders.

Depending on how boring you believe the crowd will be and on how high your expectations are you may want to implement a few of these :
– make it collective. not only you will be God. take turns.

– smoothly slide in action.
step 1 : You : “Hi, I’m {first and last name}.”
All : “Hi, {first and last name}”.
Continue like this for the whole group to introduce.
step 2 : First one goes to the middle.
Reminds his name.
All bow, face to the ground
All mantra his name for a minute, and stop somehow
Continue like this for the whole group to shine

– humour should be flying around before you start

– keep it short, disperse rapidly

Possible upgrades :
– good scheduling, ideally after a drink or two
– dark room with carpets
– lamp in the middle
– smoke machine
– shiny cape
– dolphin music or musician

This score calls for no discussion, no reflection.

Score

Dorothee Richter, Photos by Nils Kontz

Studio Banks, Tel Aviv, 25 Jan 2020

Dorothee Richter, Photos by Nils Kontz, featuring Abongile

Studio Banks, Tel Aviv, 25 Jan 2020

Studio Banks, Tel Aviv, 25 Jan 2020

Photo by Nils Kontz

Studio Bank, Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv Jaffa
25.01.2020

25 January  –  16 February 2020
Small Project for Coming Communities in Tel Aviv
Exhibition at Studio Bank, Tel Aviv–Jaffa
71 Ben Yehuda st., Tel Aviv – Jaffa (corner of 16 Mapu st.)

Opening: Saturday, 25 January 2020, from 5.00pm
Opening Hours: Monday 11am–2pm, Thursday 2–5pm

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Introduction by Professor Dorothee Richter, Head of the CAS/MAS in Curating  and Director of PhD in Practice in Curating, Practice-Based Doctoral Programme, the University of Reading and the Zurich University of the Arts, ZHdK

Short presentations by young curators from Israel and Switzerland including: Hila Cohen Schneiderman, Bar Yerushalmi, Gili Zaidman, Eveline Mathis and Anastasia Chaguidouline.

Artistic interventions by local performers including Maya Dunitz, David Lemoine, Oz Malul and Anna Zakrevsky.

On display are scores of by Robert Blatt, Maya Bamberger & Ronny Koren, Ofri Cnaani, Maria Dis, David Lemoine, Christine Ellison, Dganit Elyakim, Eran Hadas, San Keller, Ronald Kolb, Michael Leung, Neue Dringlichkeit, Ceyda Oskay, Dorothee Richter, Anike Joyce Sadiq, Yael Sloma, Pongpan Suriyapat, Nir Segal, Anat Pick, Kacey Wong, Zoncy, and works by Anastasia Chaguidouline, Axel Crettenand and Kacey Wong.

Curatorial direction: Prof. Dr. Dorothee Richter, Ronald Kolb
Curation of local iteration: Hadas Kedar (director Studio Bank)
Project Management: Julia Yablonsky

Studio Bank is an art project housed in a seven-story building that was once the headquarters of one of the main banks of Israel. More than forty creative people from different areas of expertise, including: performance, sound, visual art, theater, film, poetry, design, choreography and illustration have been assigned studio spaces in the building. Two studio residencies have been put aside for overseas professionals.
Situated on the west bank of one of the commercial streets of the city – Ben Yehuda “Straße” -surrounded by Bauhaus architecture, galleries, boutiques and cafes, the location of “Studio Bank” highlights the street’s role in the ongoing effort made by the founders of Israel to assimilate into a European-like cultural center.
The project’s in-between stage (former bank / future hotel) – its temporality – is strengthened by its proximity to the beach. In the last two decades, with the rise of tourism to the area, the beach has developed into the main focus point of the city. It attracts residents and tourists for sport, culture and commercial activities. With its popularity comes a real concern about its future. The dynamic quality of the nearby shoreline, inscribing and erasing the escalating sea level, serves as a reminder of the fragility of our natural resources.

Hadas Kedar (Director of “Studio Bank”) is a researcher, lecturer and curator based in Tel Aviv-Yaffo and in the Naqab desert. She is the founder of the Tel Aviv-Yaffo municipal gallery “Nuzhaa” and the Arad municipal gallery and residency spaces “Art and Architecture Arad” and “Arad Contemporary Art Center”.
Kedar is a graduate of Bezalel Academy of Art and Design (Israel) and Middlesex University (UK) and is currently a PhD candidate in the Postgraduate Programme in Curating at Zurich.

Maya Bamberger, Esther Epstein, Killy Koren, Ronny Koren, Olga Stefan
Zurich
28.04.2019

Reach to Eat// Dinner #2
April 28, 2019, Zurich

Maya:
There is something so scary, but at the same time fulfilling in cooking for people.

Olga:
Yes, fulfilling. Bus scary? You think that they might not like it?

Maya:
Yes, I always have it.

Olga:
Really?

Ronny:
Especially for people you never cooked for before.

Maya:
Especially for men.

*laughs*

Olga:
I never thought about it that way…

Killy:
Do you usually make Swiss food?

Esther:
I am more inspired by the stuff I have in the fridge.

Maya:
When there is nothing at home… And I have to be so creative…

Esther:
Thats the best! That’s the most inspiring thing – to do something out of nothing.

Ronny:
And you, grew up where?

Olga:
My first few years were in Romania, and then I moved with my parents to Chicago.

Esther:
But you also wanted to immigrate to Israel?…

Olga:
When we left Romania it was still a communist country so the only way for people to leave was if they were minorities. As Jews we were able to ask for a visa to Israel, and Israel was also purchasing Jews. We were able to live – Israel purchased our tickets, our arrangement and facilitated our ability to leave the country and then it just didn’t work out. We were trying to figure out different route and we were stuck in Switzerland.

Esther:
Did you stay in Zurich? Or at the airport?

Olga:
We had a distant relative who had been a war refugee and after the war he was able to come to Switzerland… When we were in Romania we didn’t have contact with anyone who resides outside of Romania so my mom only knew his name and we managed to see him and he helped us to stay here. But the situation was really difficult because we wouldn’t have been able to go back to Romania for at least ten years if he had applied for a refugee status here, until we would have gotten our passport. Then we decided to seek alternatives and we had some family in Chicago who sponsored us and agreed to support us. Those refugee laws that still function now don’t exist in the states.

Maya:
What is the purpose of this law?

Olga:
If you are a refugee the assumption is that it is dangerous in the country of origin. And if it is dangerous you can’t go there because if anything happens to you the Swiss government has to take some action on your behalf and would rather not implicate themselves.

Killy:
So many obstacles.

Olga:
Now it is even more difficult. I have started volunteering for a refugee organisation and one of their programs is to combine a person from Switzerland regardless of their status, a person who resides here with a refugee, and to facilitate this interaction. Maybe the person who lives here can show the refugee around, integrate them in their family, spend time with them etc. I was combined with a young Somali kid – 18 or 19 years old. Interestingly enough he doesn’t know himself how old he is because the birth certificates are not necessarily handed out. That particular issue was a big problem because the Swiss government has implemented laws now that make it more difficult for an adult, which means 18 years old to have asylum here. If you are deemed to be more than 18 years old your refugee status is questioned automatically. They have started implementing these processes to determine whether or not they are 18 by X-raying their body to see how their bones have developed.

Killy:
It’s a period that will be remembered. It is a change. People are moving from one place to another and it is changing the whole balance. It is like how Europe was created by moving tribes…

Esther:
I think it is a constant, slow move. Yesterday I just saw a TV show about how the population from Africa moved to the middle east and from the middle east to Europe.

Olga:
There are waves… We are judging this process in a very short window of history. The 1848 revolution in Europe established the nation states that we currently know. Only in those years we have started talking about the concept of refugees – it is a construct this of the modern period. Once you define a certain category of people… People migrated all the time, but we have never categorised them and counted them because it wasn’t something that was conceptualised as outside of the norm.

Olga:
I am doing a tour of the various spaces of memory of the general strike in 1918 through the eyes of three socialist Jewish women who created the revolution. The three Rosas:

Killi:
Oh… Rosa Luxemburg…

Olga:
Rosa Grimm and Rosa Bloch-Bollag

Killy:
Nachon (True in Hebrew)

Olga: Nachon.

Esther:
So they were working here around Zurich.

Olga:
Yes.

Killy:
OMG the Jewish women.

Esther:
In Zurich there were a lot of interesting Jewish women.

Olga:
They rock! They made everything… I would like to do a doctorate addressing the topic: ‘Why is it that Jewish women were the most progressive women in the European history?’

Esther:
I was asking it myself too because I am doing this ‘Message Salon’ which is the Salon I always wanted to do, and from the beginning I said it is a tribute to Jewish women salon.

(Maya:
Tonight, this is a swish women salon.

Killy:
This is what the two of you do my dear.

Ronny: Yes.

Killy:
It is a very gentle touch.)

Esther:
I was asking myself why I was doing it. I felt connected to this position of a woman with a Jewish background creating this kind of places to come together and I was thinking what is it to me. I was looking for an explanation. I felt like it is something about not feeling really at home because I don’t belong somewhere totally, but to create your own kind of tribe around you. To have a family you created.

Ronny:
Can we quote you?

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