Re-create life out of ruins, re-create a sound-portrait of a textile factory, located in Gyumri, also known as the “city of masters”. This factory, as a personality, has a hard biography of its collapse in 1988 during an earthquake followed by the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Once in operation for more than 60 years, the factory is in a condition of abandoned ruins. This mystical space as a Zone (referenced to the zone in the film Stalker by Andrey Tarkovsky) has a sacral meaning and contains a multilayered collage of voices. Where human speech emerged with the sound of motors of textile machines. And the sound of wind, from abandaned ruins, are in conversation with spirits of the proletarians. The composition aims to recycle memory and meaning to develop a new sound image of a forgotten space. It is based on archival recordings of the pre-earthquake factory, on onomatopoeic memories of the people, on interviews with witnesses of the time and on present-day recordings.
40°47’58.2 “N 43°51’07.1 “E | Gyumri, Provinz Shirak, Armenia
© Maria Matinyan
© Ibrahim Memkelo
Maria Matinyan is a Munich-based artist, art educator and curator of Armenian origin. As a site-specific artist, she focuses on the artistic exploration of spaces, time and memories; especially the sound memories of specific places, people, feelings and events. They appear as a connection between the past, the future and where we are now. In 2020 she founded the social-cultural platform G.URBAN with other artists from Munich and Gjumri/Armenia to promote exchange between young Armenian, German and international artists through common projects. Since then, three major projects have been realized: “Ground Art Fest” in Gjumri, the residency program “M A R D S” in Munich and “Artworks For Peace“.