There are various ways to arrive somewhere. Every person can choose between long, medium and short paths.The artist Tatiana Trouvé proposes yet another possibility: to no longer focus on the length and difficulty of the path, and to remove the destination and starting point, through which to determine the course.
Beginning with the survey of Gstaad, Trouvé created a map guide with fictional texts of different places she traveled to. These poetic and fictional series of maos: „ The great Atlas of Disorientation" take the form of a guide with fictional texts related to each place. The traveler of these guides is given several somewhat convoluted routes and is guided through some lesser-known aspects of the region and taken on an uncanny and disorientating experience for the senses. The secret aspects of the region are presented as stations in the exploration of the unknown. In this gesture,Trouvé isn't concerned with the walks but with approaches to life. Trouvé is concerned with the observation of one's own existence, raising questions about orientation at a time in which there is no longer guidance. „It is not the light that sets up difficulties; it is the darkness that makes one helpless," says Trouvé. In her own poem. found on the back of the Gstaad man. Trouvé asks: "What would you do if you found yourself in the mountains or in the streets of a village you didn't know in the depths of night?" A way to find one's way in the dark as well is to orient yourself according to the moon and the stars. The first guide was created for the occasion of Elevation 2017, in Gstaad, Switzerland, under the title: You Are Here. Further maps include Istanbul, Buenos Aires, and Berlin.
To orient yourself in the darkness of your hotel room, you need only one thing: to grasp an object such as a door handle or the the corner of a table, and locate your position in space with the help of your memory.Having seen the room only once before may be enough. But how will you cope in the darkness of the night, when you are in the mountains or in streets that you hardly recognize and whose houses you cannot distinquish? What are the things you can call up in your memory if you have to walk in places you do not know at night? There are always the sky, the moon and the stars. Orientation means that by knowing one wind direction you can derive the three others. South, North, West and East. But we also need to situate ourselves in the starry night as well as in the room of our hotel to differentiate our right from our left. Orientate means knowing we are between the earth and the sky. We mostly experience this sense of interconnection between that which is above and that which is below in the darkness of night, and never as intensely as when we believe, just for a moment, to be lost. It is when we have few landmarks or when they fade that we learn to navigate, alone, between earth and sky.
© Text Tina Khayyer