Recurring (from lat. recurrēre) 1. tr. to traverse a space or place in its full extent or length.
Memory (From lat. memoria) 1. f. The psychic faculty by means of which the past is retained and remembered.
The “Muséum” project by Mendia Echeverría (Lerín, Spain, 1989) consists of a series of photographs documenting The National Museum of Natural History in Paris, which is constituted as an architectural space to preserve memories. This project aims to build an archive in the format of a visual atlas that reveals how memory is a transversal component. The general objective of the project is to investigate the role of the museum in the 21st century beyond being a space that only houses memories. As specific objectives, the meaning of the museum as a space for learning and the trace in the memory that it can leave us.
The National Museum of Natural History in Paris is France’s national natural history museum. Its main functions are the conservation of scientific collections, research and the dissemination of scientific culture in everything related to the institution’s own specialty: natural history. In this scenario, the nexus between memory and space constitutes a vein of photographic exploration based on the following premise: space is adapted in an almost timeless way to house memories that do not belong to the place where they are located.
Memory is configured as the foundation of the culture of a society and, therefore, the basis of education. We base our way of educating and doing education on what we have lived, just as memory conditions and defines the essence of those who inhabit a given culture. Analyzing that memory implies understanding how spaces are constructed and configured. Museums have been and are spaces that contain knowledge, a way to teach and bring from faraway places that which was only referred to in books. The way in which memory is objectified and recorded in the public space constitutes another way of framing the memories and experiences of a specific physical space. These photographs are configured as spheres where time, space and historicity are compiled, and which allow us to analyze the way in which the past comes to shape the future.Text by Mendía Echeverría. Curated by Juan Curto.
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