Misplaced Memories Mission Log
11-15 February 2015
Location: Tate Britain
Coordinates: 51-29-28North 07-37west 357N

Mission
To research which memories we choose to keep
And which memories we choose to erase
And what lies in the gaps

1: ANAMNESIS
Of our human sample
98% deposited a keepsake memory

From what time do we remember
The little boy shoots up his hand.
The night time.

No, says another
It's the day before yesterday.

Human Rights lawyer Martyn Day
Remembers the old Kenyans knocking on his door in the middle of the night
They had a memory they needed to share before they died
Why did they need to share it? asks a woman
Justice, he replied, no matter how vague.

2: LACUNA
Of our human sample
73% desposited an eraseable memory
Patrick Vernon travelled over 3000 miles

To ask the Senegalese elders the story of their village
They’d never shared this story before
Because they had never been asked.

And when we forget
whispers a little girl
we eat our memories.

3: SMOKE
Of our human sample
45% of our keepsake memories resonated in the heart
52% of our eraseable memories resonated in the head

We leak memories like smoke
Says Dr Olajide
A paralysed arm
A sudden loss of speech
Shocked Mice pass down their fear of cherry blossoms to their offspring

Our mutation may make us behave differently
Says Dr Osman
But our code remains the same
And the only way to make sense of our codes
Is to pass on our memories

She tells us one of her grandmother
Pointing out the position of the moon in the dark Sudanese sky
And telling her the exact time and date
The knowledge has faded but Dr Osman’s memory
Remains

4: ARCHIVE
Of our human sample
37% chose to preserve their memory on film
Others chose to grow it, play it or trick

42% chose to erase a memory by dumping it in still water
Others chose to click delete, flush it away or hide it in a dark place

The British government meticulously documents its’ memory
Says Martyn Day
Even the memory it chooses to erase
It’s the human impulse
Says Dr Olajide
To have witness beared

We debate the desire to select, rehearse and play out our memories
To leave them in the world for interpretation

5: BODY
Of our human sample
12% said they would choose not to erase a memory

An exchange haunts one woman
A reminiscence of Japan 1945
A memory hidden in the gaps of the body and the words
And by folding into those gaps she relived the memory

6: MISSION CONCLUSION
The universe is a memory map we carry
In the way our breath moves
In the rhythm of our genes
The reminder of something ancient that continues on far beyond our own existence

Memories may slip
They may be burnt, scattered or sunk to the bottom of current free water
But within us

They resurface.
ANAMNESIS (Gaylene Gould)