A nation is a community of individuals united by a collective memory of the past, but the European Union is a community built on collective forgetting. Countries joining the Union over the past two decades have traded their difficult memories of past rivalries, wars and genocides for peace and prosperity, but now that the boom times are over the past is returning.

Made during travels through ten countries during the height of the European debt crisis, The Memory of History explores the use and abuse of the past in the context of recession. At the same time, it reflects on historicist conceptions of time as forward moving and of history as a linear, ideas which underpin the western belief in continuous progress which contributed to the crisis.

Rejecting a fixed narrative, The Memory of History consists of a box of fifty-six inkjet prints and an experimental essay The History of Memory which is composed of twelve short texts chapters on history, memory and time. Images and text are mixed freely, resulting in a unique viewing experience every time the box is opened as new connections form, emulating the way the past reconstitutes itself differently each time we return to it.

View The Memory of History box

View The Memory of History exhibition

View The Memory of History book

Read The History of Memory essay

 


The Memory of History recession euro history Lewis Bush (5)

Bulgarian Fighter Jet, Sofia

European Central Bank, Frankfurt

The Memory of History recession euro history Lewis Bush (8)

Vandalised Hoarding, Lisbon

The Memory of History recession euro history Lewis Bush (7)

Victory Arch, Madrid

The Memory of History recession euro history Lewis Bush (10)

Site of the East German Parliament, Berlin

Designer Boutique, Athens

The Memory of History recession euro history Lewis Bush (11)

Prussian War Monument, Berlin

The Memory of History recession euro history Lewis Bush (18)

Carabinieri in Riot Gear, Rome

Memorial plaque, Budapest

 

 


 

Lewis Bush