The long-term, research initiative “The Whole Life: An Archive Project” focuses on the diversity and complexity of archives. Organized by Haus der Kulteren der Welt in collaboration with Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art, the Pina Bausch Foundation, and Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden (SKD), the project examines how archives can initiate new ideas, while making accessible and relevant the history, context, and materials that they house.
Launching as an online platform in June 2021, the project concludes with an in-person congress and artistic program at Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin in March 2022. Contributors are invited to activate the archives, bringing contemporary artistic practice into dialog with the achieve’s collections. The program includes contributions by Clarissa Thieme, Olaf Nicolai, Doreen Mende, and Hannah Hurtzig, as well as two videos from Assaf Gruber’s series of short films “The Transient Witness.” Gruber’s film works portray the migration and transformation of the Archive of the Avantgarde, an archival collection compiled by the collector Egidio Marzona, which was brought from his home in Berlin into a local state archive in Dresden. Gruber’s films explore how the move from private to public changes the status of the art and artifacts within the archive’s collection.