Graduated in visual arts and holding an MFA painter degree, the Hungarian artist Gergő Bánkúti (1991) is inspired by the exploration of memory and remembrance. Many of his works are connected to the material and immaterial heritage, they speak about the absence and passing away and the relationship with our ancestors in a symbolic way. He makes memorials of the past life – both as a personal narrative and as a larger social history about a disappearing life.
Accordingly, his research carried out during the residence in the Basque country has focused on funeral rites and objects related to mourning. He found the ‘argizaiola’ ethnography object: a carved wooden board that includes a rolled-up candle used in some rural municipalities of Gipuzkoa, for funeral rites. “Still missing” proposed an performance with dozens of replicas copied in bread. Each participant of the action could choose a piece to which they noted a handwritten message; a message they would like to send someone or something what is no longer in their life or alternatively, what/who they would like to mourn. It served as a therapeutic exercise to release painful episodes from the past. On an autumn morning at the banks of the Bidasoa river, the collective performance took place, with the argizaiolas floated away on the waves of the stream.
Apart from his personal connection to still missing something or someone, this project puts an emphasis on how we can recover from a loss and sustain our ability to mourn in the times of uncertainty, when a certain mental problem appears which requires psychological work. With the ‘Still missing’ participatory performance he wanted to create an opportunity for people to take care of their own feelings and traumas, by asking them to let go of something which no longer serves them in the present, to help them release a burden they carried and wanted to get free of.
Bitamine Faktoria – Ane Agirre Loinaz (Tabakalera) – Arantza Lauzirika (Arte Ederren Fakultatea UPV-EHU)
Fran Dussourd – Joxe eta Elur Ulibarrena – Juncal Alfonso – María José Noain – Maite Martinez de Arenaza – Miren Akordagoitia – Nerea de Diego – Unai Requejo – Xabier Kerexeta
Chillida Leku – Gordailu – Huarte Arte Garaikide Zentroa – La Taller – Museo Etnográfico del Reino de Pamplona – Nekatoenea – San Telmo Museoa – UPV-EHU