City audio-guide, 35:35 mins, mp3 players and earphones
Created during an exchange program in Thessaloniki, the audio guide unfolds the lives of Thessalonikian Jews past and present, opening alternative ways of experiencing the city. The poetic observations, fragmented narratives and elusive instructions heard in the voiceover are interwoven with a genre of popular Israeli songs that are based on the Greek repertoire, at time directly referencing the city. By their melancholy tone, they evoke the hardships attached to journeys of any kind – a theme that carries special significance for the Jews who left Greece, for whom it is the sound of the world they left behind, at once familiar and alien.
In English, OST stands for Original Sound Τrack. In German, however, it translates as ‘East’ – of particular relevance to Laufer, who lives in the formerly divided city Berlin. East is also the direction of prayer for European Jews. In Israel, Eastern music is the literal translation of the musical genre under which Greek music is classified. This genre – in Hebrew mizrahi music – combines elements from Southern Europe, North Africa and the Arab world.
Realized in the framework of Storefront Marketplace, the Contemporary Art Centre, Thessaloniki, and presented during Diasporas, an art project by the Babylon Cultural Center, October 2015