Gdansk, October 2017

What Remains of a Rembrandt Torn Into Four Equal Pieces and Flushed Down the Toilet

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A project by Simone Basani

curated by Alice Ciresola 

What Remains… is about narration, empathy and memory. Between 15-20 September 2017, it transformed a State Art Gallery in Sopot (Poland) into a temporary laboratory to produce and stage memories in a collective dimension. A group of performers tested strategies of remembering and creating new cultural myths within the museum space. What Remains inhabited the gallery for a week through two performative actions. 

The museum, understood as a complex stratification of layers – historical, institutional and architectural – was being narrated in real time through an ongoing and diffused performance. The audience itself was included in the portrait of the museum as a living organism.

Unexpected corners of gallery hosted a sequence of reconstructed places. These have been scene of events fixed in individual or communities’ memory. The act of re-creating their physical dimension was made visible and shared with the audience. Collaborative effort of memory and narration precipitated into invisible architectures. 

What Remains… was the attempt to reconstruct far and recent events and the relationship they still have with our present. 

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photos: Adam Bogdan

Performers participating in the project: Dana Chmielewska, Joanna Czajkowska, Julianna Graczyk, Katarzyna Pastuszak, Agnieszka Sprawka

*** What Remains borrows its title from the homonymous art essay written by Jean Genet on Rembrandt’s portraits, in 1967.


Simone Basani and Alice Ciresola (IT/BE) are an artist and curator duo. They create collective services and educational devices for communities and cultural institutions. At the residency in LAZNIA CCA they were working on transcultural and transhistorical narrations conceived by and for Gdansk citizenship, on the border between the museum and the public spaces.

Simone Basani and Alice Ciresola are conducting their project in frames of an artistic residency in LAZNIA CCA between 2016 – 2018.