Uncertain Memories | Renata Poljak
Uncertain Memories
Photographs, 2012/13

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It all started with my last project Staging Actors/Staging Beliefs and the film Bosko Buha from 1979. During my research, I realized that the way I had originally thought the hero in the film had died was historically inaccurate.

In the span of a lifetime, we all collect imprecise memories, believing something happened a certain way when it actually unfolded differently. Our stories and memories are constructed in the mind according to emotions, expectations, or reliable facts. “Imprecise Memories” became the title of a new photographic series I am working on. In this series I grapple with a vast and elusive subject matter that does not reference a specific issue or problem, it does not offer answers to targeted questions. Instead, the photographs focus on deconstructing the plausibility of the question itself: how does depict a fiction of the mind or false memory that never existed? This photograph shows a girl that accidentally passed by while Andrey Tarkovsky was location scouting in Italy (for his movie “Nostalgia”).

The small girl had crossed paths with the filmmaker by chance, playfully preoccupied with her yellow balloon. The camera randomly catches her while she wonders around. When I saw her – the girl with the yellow balloon – I felt the need to rewind the video a few times. Something special was hidden in that sequence. After I took a photo of the TV screen, I couldn’t stop thinking about the image for days. It was sometime later that I placed a post-it note on the photograph stating, “THIS IS NOT ME”.

The nature of the post-it as a tool for note-taking, reminding, remembering, was perfectly in line with the series. It’s place is within the realm – or to avoid the realm – of Imprecise Memories.