David Toop - Remembering and Forgetting

Remembering and Forgetting
David Toop

Writing a text on the art of memory, guided meditation and hypnagogic imagery for Joachim Koester’s book, Bringing Something Back, I recalled my own memory from the early 1970s, lying in bed above the sound of a river in which I heard indecipherable voices murmuring to me as if fell into hypnagogia, then sleep. The deep entrancement of turbulent waters in which voices spoke of time fading into darkness led me to the Nine Songs, ninth-century shamanistic poems from ancient China, translated by Arthur Waley, in which the female shaman has visions of her spirit companion in his fish-scale house under the water. Remembering and Forgetting is a sound piece that enacts a parallel narrative to this sequence of memories, a falling into abyssal architecture which is as solid as remembering, as elusive as forgetting.
- David Toop

Bergen Kunsthall is happy to release Remembering and Forgetting, a newly commissioned audio piece from David Toop.
Remembering and Forgetting draws upon Toop’s essay The Art of Memory and Forgetting, from the book Bringing Something Back, by Joachim Koester.

Danish artist Joachim Koester’s book, Bringing Something Back, centres on a series of “meditation tapes” that Koester presented in his exhibitions at Camden Art Centre in 2017 and Bergen Kunsthall in 2018. The “tapes” explored the various twilight zones between waking and sleeping, and what can be brought back from such semi-darkened mental states in an exhibition context. Operating on the one hand as an exhibition cata¬logue, documenting the artworks and ideas that were presented in these two shows, the book also sets out to expand this exploration in its own right. A visual essay, compiled by art historian, writer and curator Yann Chateigné, runs through the book and combines Koester’s own works with a selection of archival pictures that visually extends the discourse of the “tapes”, texts and artworks.

The exhibition, “Bringing Something Back”, by Joachim Koester was curated by Martin Clark and Steinar Sekkingstad at Bergen Kunsthall, 26 January – 18 March 2018.

The publication, Bringing Something Back, includes text contributions from Jelena Martinovic, David Toop, Yann Chantigné and Joachim Koester. Editors: Mai Lahn-Johannessen, Steinar Sekkingstad. Design: Blank Blank. Published by Bergen Kunsthall, Camden Arts Centre and Koenig Books, 2019.