A Dream in Which I Am You

Joshua Schwebel


Artist Novel, 17 x 10,8 cm, 253 p., language : English, publisher : self-published, ISBN : N/A.
Materials: ink, paper

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. B 2029/825).

Literary synopsis

One year after Joshua Schwebel was artist in residency at the Tadeusz Kantor summer house in the Polish countryside, the artist recounts the interventions he performed in the house. Rather than giving a documentary account of these actions, Schwebel performs a formal and structural intervention into the role of documentation in securing memory. Through the novel, he displaces and fictionalises his own memories through inviting his sister, Shoshana Schwebel, to impersonate him and narrate his experience in a fictional first person, while the artist impersonates the memories of his former collaborator. This structure of authorial impersonation also engages with the premise of conducting a residency in the home of, and in the legacyof, artistic legend Tadeusz Kantor, whose own work deal powerfully with memory and trauma in the wake of the Holocaust in Poland.

Relation of the novel to the artist’s practice

A Dream in Which I Am You is one fo several of Schwebel's works involving impersonation, impostership, and memory. These works shift boundaries between memory and fiction, and documentation and fabulation, to question the structures of memory after a secret, concealed or forgotten trauma.

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