Carina Randløv’s Souvenir Shop

Consumerism transformed the global tourism into a devouring appropriation machine, a nightmare that made the society of spectacle extinct: a visit to a place or a culture is burdened with own pre-expectations which does not let the Other speak in its own language, and with an inevitable quest for owing some part of this Other. As a result of this post-capitalist, neocolonial tourism there happens a physical and symbolical pollution that tends to cause a continuous overlay of the historical values, although the memory still remains and haunts around a specific space. On the other hand, (g)local economy depends on these mechanisms fundamentally.

Carina is questioning the mechanisms of these phenomena, the role of tourist attractions and the capitalist logic of their falsified or authentic ruins. They should offer, sell, advertise, create wishes, be aggressive towards the visitor and make him close to a consumer that has a greater possibility that s/he will be unhappy with what s/he buys, the more choices (that is, souvenirs), there are, as Barry Schwartz describes in his anticonsumerist book, The Paradox of Choice. Out of found material that she involves in most of her projects, Carina creates a souvenir shop where the souvenirs are molded after existing historical remnants. Using aesthetics of the Bazaar and typical advertisement strategies of presentation, the latter being explored and ironically subvertised also in her previous work ‘Knüller’, she tries to highlight the certain responsibility that we all share towards a history and a place that reveals it, as it is also at the core of the concept of the Dialog Loci project.

Nataša Petrešin