YEAR OF THE BOG

Text Reads Lesen am See

Lesen am See #2: COVEN BERLIN reads the YEAR OF THE BOG

with: Zinzi Buchanan, COVEN BERLIN, Inky Lee, Daniela Medina Poch, and Meghna Singh
NEW DATE: Sunday 4th of September at 6:00 pm (we will be there swimming at the beach from 4pm on! If you want to join, bring 3 euros and a towel 🙂

Address: Strandbad Tegelsee /Zentrum für Kultur und Erholung Schwarzer Weg 95, 13505 Berlin
Hosted by: Neue Nachbarschaft Moabit and Moabit Mountain College

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A closeup of a massive circle of black ink, cratered and three-dimensional, with metallic silver highlights and dust on thick grained white paper. Written in pencil above it is: The clock is always wrong.

Wart Paintings

Begun in 2021, Wart Paintings is an ongoing series that is part of an ever-growing body of warts Johanna Hedva has been cultivating for years. Mysterious, recalcitrant, and oddly sentient, warts testify to an animist reality, antagonizing our belief in individual agency by forcing us to negotiate with and relate emotionally to an inanimate foreign body embedded in our own. An old wives’ tale states that warts will leave the body if you simply ask them to, as if they are listening. There is a relationship there—what is it?

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Google Street View, Image collage, Sonnenallee, Berlin. Excerpts from: Artist unknown, Freya and her Cat Chariot, 1886; Fresco of Edigna in the Linden, c. 1800, St. Sebastian in Puch Kirche.

Unter den Linden

I turned the laundry hamper upside down, shaking the quivering body into the planter. A rat, fugitive found in the bathroom of my shared flat, tumbled into the mess of cigarette butts and weeds growing near the trunk of the tree that separated the sidewalk from the parked cars. I’m sorry, I thought, following the rat’s ecstasy as she fled to the faintly fissured gray bark. I couldn’t find a wild place to bring you. A siren howled, blue and white light lit up the underside of the branches that graced the first floor of the apartment building where I took shelter.

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It is a small swamp in Grunewald on a sunny day. The picture was taken from slightly above. There is an area covered with the thick high grass in the middle of the image. One can distinguish separate plants on the first plan. Behind this area, more to the upper right and left corners of the image are green deciduous trees.

Unmeasurable Falling

The first time I stepped into marsh water was when I was about 7. One of the first sunny days in early May. My friend’s family took me along with them to the reservoir. We were all neighbors living in the same street on the outskirts, and in the summer all the kids were biking there quite often. But at that time we probably were yet too young to go there by ourselves.

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This is a photo that is out of focus. It captures a small section of a wall where there are what appears to be family photos hanging.

The Art of (Not) Forgetting – photographing memories as a way to resist censorship

In my project “The Art of (Not) Forgetting”, which began in February 2021, around 4 months after the start of the protests in Belarus, I tried to use storytelling and photography as a means of opposing the regime of the last European dictator: Alexander Lukashenko. The idea that brought me to address these issues was prompted by the situation I was observing in my country since August 2020. During massive rallies against the rigged presidential election, one of the symbols used by the opposition was the white-red-white flag that refers to the period of an independent Belarus and dates back to 1918. Very soon the regime declared this combination was “extremist” and eventually banned. People wearing clothes, scarves, bracelets, and even socks with the “wrong” colors were detained, fined, and given prison sentences.

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An image of birch trees in a forest. On the closest tree, a squarish red area is visible. In the middle of the area is a small oval black and white portrait.

Forest that Cares – on Belarus, Partisans, and Thicket We Can Learn A Lot From

Human culture, people’s beliefs and behaviors are shaped by the natural environment we live in. Climate defines our diets and clothing habits, but certainly the most intricate interactions occur at deeper levels – deserts or jungles, the closeness to big waters or high mountains determine the way we perceive ourselves and others and feel about this strange thing called “life”.

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The End is Not an Option: Carrier Bags and the Rhythm of the Bog

I’ve spent a lot of the last years in bogland – literal and metaphysical. For six years I obsessively returned to a river in Lancashire, (U.K.). I spent most of my time on top of the peat fells (big swathes of high altitude, boggy moorland with flat tops), looking for the source of small rivers that swell out of the wetland and spill down the cracks they make in the hillsides.

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A glitchy image, with black ,peach, grey, red, and blue shattered pixels, which seems to have originally been a selfie-style photo of someone's lower body and feet in the bathtub

It Glitches at the Sight of Our Nipples

Day to day, I write and organize projects about the digital commons — where groups of people with aligned goals build systems of digital communication and information that they rely on and steward together. Like a community garden, but we dig our hands into signals, scatter bits and pixels so they grow into something meaningful. Platform co-operatives, community networks, digital research and cultural archives, Free and Open Source projects, are just some examples.

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