Anka Leśniak

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WORKS 2015


installation - site-specific work /stencil technique, photography, object trouvé

The exhibition Rozpakować walizki / Koffer auspacken
In collaboration with Endmorane - the Association of Women Artists from Germany
The Koelmann Höfe Factory, Frankfurt (Oder), Germany

In the installation in Frankfurt, I refer to Eta Harich-Schneider – a German clavichord player who used to live in Frankfurt as both a young girl and woman before World War II. She became a recognised musician not only in Frankfurt and she began to work as a clavichord professor in Berlin. In 1941 she did not return to Germany following her concert tour in Japan. She is an author of important publications on Japanese music and her contribution to musical practice and theory is unquestioned. However her biography still remains unclear, e.g. her love affair with Richard Sorge (a Russian spy) in Japan.

The title of my work refers to the decorative element of a clavichord which is called the "rose". The names of flowers are also used as complements for beautiful and gentle women. When I call Eta Harich Schneider a „Clavicord Rose” I perceive her as a skilled, talented and hard-working person who distinguished herself among both female and male musicians.

fot. z mojego archiwum

The two-week work on the project involved the cleaning of some parts of the space and therefore as a consequence, slightly changing its character. I referred to a resemblance between the historic residential architecture of palaces and castles and 19th century factories which draw from those residential models. In the dust which was gathering on the windows of the abandoned factory for over twenty years, I wiped clean the shape of rosettes, through which one could peer outside. The rosettes which contained a symbol of the sun were also wiped onto the walls. The concrete floor after repeated scraping and painting took on the nobility of stone. On the walls there were also placed two quotes from the book by Eta Harich-Schneider "Characteren und Katastrophen" /Characters and Disasters/:

I use all my skills and abilities, because who knows how long one will live.

There were no signs of disaster.

As part of the installation, the book by Eta Harich Schneider was placed on a music stand.

photo: Susanne Ahner

Special thanks for KaBomhardt