Die Gehängten - Hung Up



Audiocassette for walkman with noose, German 28 mins, English 26 mins, with Texts from Kölnisch Wasser 1993

As slide reading with 57 slides

German translation Die Gehängten Tanya Ury and Jörg Pattberg 1999

Extract Die Gehängten - Hung up published in English and German in Menschen wie Du und Ich (People Like You and Me), exhibition catalogue, produced by Ury, Cologne City Museum, publ. Korridor Verlag, ISBN 3-9804354-6-6 (D) 1999

German version Die Gehängten publ. in Patriarchat der Vernunft - Matriarchat des Gefühls? Geschlechterfdifferenzen im Denken und Fühlen (Patriarchy of Rationality - Matriarchy of Feeling? Gender Difference, Thinking and Feeling), publishers Daedalus Verlag, ISBN 3-89126-167-5 (D) 2001


Die Gehängten - Hung up, written six years after Tanya Ury moved to Cologne relates family history and stories about contemporary encounters in the city from which much of her Jewish family originated.

This bi-lingual audiocassette was made for the exhibition: Menschen wie Du und Ich (People like you and me) curated by artist Tanya ury and running parallel to the notorious touring exhibition: Crimes of the German Army 1941-44 in the Cologne City Museum, April 1999. The spoken narrative concerns itself with Ury's personal and historical connection to Cologne and Germany. The title is after a painting in the museum's collection 'Die Gehängten' (The Hanged Ones) by Bert May 1945 which depicts the public hanging in 1944 of 11 Soviet and Polish prisoners who had been deported by the Nazis and forced into slave labour in Germany. It is not hard for the artist to identify with the protagonists of this painting; members of her own Jewish family suffered a similar fate. Tanya Ury worked for a year from 1997-98 as archivist in the Kölnisches Stadtmuseum (Cologne City Museum).

"I worked in the Kölnisches Stadtmuseum for just over a year, from July 1997 onwards. Amongst the several duties delegated to me was the supervision of all of the objects in the permanent collection. I was to measure the degree of light falling on each object and the temperature and dampness in each of the vitrines. On exhibition are German items collected from the Middle Ages, up to this day.

I also worked in a museum depot at Merlo Strasse, doing restoration work on a collection of 19th century casting moulds made out of iron. These were oiled, wrapped in wax paper by me, numbered and stored in chronological order on shelves.

There was a large armament collection that consisted of pieces of armour, swords and also weapons from this century. One glance into these rooms was more nerve-wracking than walking into a chamber of horrors. This building was a sort of ghost house - there were rumours that it had once been Gestapo Head Quarters. I don't have to look far; there are traces everywhere, indications of the crimes of the past. Every November, I attend Art Cologne, the big art fair in the Deutzer Messe and think about Grete and Ella Unger, two of my grandfather's sisters, who were deported from there and were never seen again."

Extract from Hung Up



Audiocassette German 28 mins, English 26 mins
Sound Engineer Marc Rensing