Zuzana Duchová

curator in residence March 2017, Slovakia /


Kurvakontextverschiebung / F*cking Shift of Context

is an artistic research performed togehter with Jürgen Rendl, an Austrian born and Bratislava based radio editor and researcher, dedicated to peripheries and marginalized knowledge. Guided by curiosity, he is constantly wandering, absorbing, and occasionally intervening at the fringes of urban life.
Our professional interests are often linked together and marked by working with and through SK and AT stereotypes. Zuzana Duchová is interested in the overlapping fields of tourism and the arts.
Through site-specific art, she is interested in motivating people to engage in a more sensitive and creative perception of their living environment and architectural spaces. So far she had organized and curated exhibitions, presentations, lectures, film projections, concerts and discussions that all worked either with the shifted context of their place or visitors. The challenge is also to push the senses of people stuck in their daily routines into the position of a tourist seeking adventure and something different. We don’t have to leave the well-known environment to explore the exotic and bizarre, but bring the feeling of unknown to an otherwise common milieu.

Besides other contexts, the working title of this project refers to a Czechoslovak movie Kurvahosigutntag (1992), which reflects the life in the "wild nineties" after the fall of the iron curtain, the époque symbolized also by the good old Südbahnhof - symbol of first Slovak contact to the Western Europe.

I chose Südbahnhof as the topic and "showcase example" of the residency, as a model reference of above mentioned principles to explore the city, the unknown, the recent forgotten past, the periphery, the "other exotic" in the middle of normal routine...
Practical outcome of the project will be a text, collection of memories and historical data, which will build a base for a guided tour planned on 25.3. That will shift the tourist-guided tours into an artistic performance.
Südbahnhof is an excellent example of "Kontextverschiebung", shift of context. The station was physically removed and moved, but what happened on the level of city memory? How long does it take to build a place from a site? How do you really shift context? Train stations, together with airports, supermarkets and similar venues are subject of the theories of non-place of the anthropologist Marc Augé. Starting with an attempt to disentangle anthropology from history, Augé goes on to map the distinction between place, encrusted with historical monuments and creative social life, and non-place, to which individuals are connected in a uniform manner and where no organic social life is possible.


Zuzana Duchová studied art history in Vienna and Bratislava, PhD. in spatial planning at SUT Bratislava. She worked as external lecturer at the TBU Zlín and SUT Bratislava. In addition to the theoretical investigation of the cultural life in cities, co-organized a number of events at the intersection of art, architecture, creative tourism (Urban Re / Creation, Urban Reset). Zuzana Duchová edited 2 books about culture of Bratislava: BA! U-fu-tour guide and BA!! Places of Living Culture (1989 - 2016). She started a pop-up gallery and cultural refreshments at the train station called Salonik. Regularly she publishes articles about contemporary culture. Her areas of interest are: site specific art, national stereotypes, urban life, tourism and visual studies. Her parallel life is hardware jewellery design.

ZUZANA_DUCHOVa_portfolio.pdf (pdf, 698 kb)