Working against the repression of a place
The suburb of Offenseesiedlung (literally: ‘open lake settlement’) in Ebensee is better known as Lager (camp). Starting from the question of where this name comes from, we will occupy ourselves with the story of a settlement that we will investigate layer for layer together with present-day and former residents.
The stories are about work, forced labour in the Second World War in connection with the Ebensee Concentration Camp, about displaced persons who afterwards, living in this UNRRA camp, looked for work, including handicraft which here always enabled the environment to be shaped autonomously, especially through converting, renovating and working with wood.
Also in leisure hours, wood plays a great role, including in ‘wooding’ (Hölzern), a sport that is special to this locality. Visitors and artists have the opportunity to take part in a wooding course and to present the newly learned skills in a small tournament.
With a school class we will build furniture serving the presentation of results and stories, sit together in an improvised canteen and exchange stories of our experiences.
We will listen to music, readings and stories that interweave with the archive material, and will speak of our knowledge under the guidance of On the Wheel of Time.
What remains, apart from the furniture which we will donate to the clubs and residents as a thank-you for housing our project, are the stories that will be retold and the relationships that emerge.
Offenseesiedlung ‘Camp’ in Steinkogl
Workshops daily 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
In collaboration with the Contemporary History Museum
Marlene Rutzendorfer (Events, workshops), Rudolf Stueger (Events, text), Bernhard Hachleitner (Historical presentation), Pablo Leiva (Video), Marion Rutzendorfer (Research, text)
We would especially like to thank Kathrin and Wolfgang Quatember, as well as Katarina Barton for collaborating on the project, On the Wheel of Time. Thanks go also to Herbert Riedler for supervising the furniture workshop with his class at the Ebensee New Secondary School, to the wooding umpire, Mario Knecht, for his willingness to instruct us in the art of the game, wooding, as well as the residents for accepting us temporarily in their settlement and for their active engagement in the project.