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Die Sprechende Grenze / Mluvící Hranice
(The speaking border)

2010, Interactive installation in public space, Viertelfestival Austria 2010
Interactive public announcement system, motion detector, solar panel, salutation samples
Border crossing, Gmünd - Ceské Velenice (Austria - Czech Republic)


draft border installation


A self-constructed “salutatory machine” mounted direct at an official border checkpoint between Austria and the Czech Republic. By using monitoring hardware this installation tracks people crossing the border and welcomes them acoustically, either in Austrian “Grüß Gott” or in Czech ”Dobrý den”. Initially this procedure can be seen as a friendly act but as it is played back again and again the erstwhile welcoming salutation alters into a prayer-mill-like gesture. The installation was mounted and running from May till August 2010. A critical view on Austrias tradition in phoney hyper-friendliness.

Assembling team: Hanns-Guido Koch, Manfred Söllner.