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WS: Sebastian Pranz and Klaus Neuburg: Archive of Transition: Narratives of Change in Georgia

When Dec 01, 2015
from 02:00 to 05:00
Where Phil I, GCSC, R. 001
Contact Name
Contact Phone (+49) 0641 99 30040
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„It seems to me that Tbilisi wakes up with a new face every morning.“ Stephan Wackwitz, writer, flaneur and head of the Goethe Institute Georgia.


Since the “Rose Revolution” in 2003 Georgia is going through a process of rapid modernization. While the government is privatizing common ground and takes down old houses literally over night, foreign investors are building up hotels and new quarters. At the same time there‘s a young urban milieu trying to stop city hall with occupy-camps and raise public awareness with guerrilla-gardening.

The Archive of Transition is a joint project of Georgian and German journalists, artists, photographers collecting narratives of change in Tbilisi and aiming to document the process of social transformation with a transmedia website. In the workshop the creative directors Sebastian Pranz and Klaus Neuburg talk about archival principles as a new approach in cultural journalism and give insights into the process of their work.

This workshop works towards the GCSC's wider aim of exploring alternative, practice-based forms of research and fostering collaborations between academia and other actors and institutions in the field of cultural production and analysis. The major goal of the workshop is to provide participants with insights into the practices and concepts of the "Archive of Transition", and to use the project to discuss broader questions about, e.g., the methods of archiving societal change, the interrelationship between cultural remembrance and cultural transformation, questions of authorship, the role of art, photography, and oral history in the production and staging of archives, and the implications of the project with regard to current identity politics in Georgia and, more broadly, Eastern Europe.



  • Berdahl (2000): "Introduction", in: Altering States. Ethnographies of Transition in Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet UnionAnn Arbor: The University of Michigan Press. 1-13.
  • Erll, Astrid. "Transkulturelle Erinnerung und kultureller Wandel." In: Stefan Deines, Daniel Martin Feige and Martin Seel (eds.), Formen kulturellen Wandels. Bielefeld: Transcript 2012: 141-158.
  • van Alphen, Ernst (2014): Staging the Archive. Art and Photography in the Age of New Media. London: Reaktion Books
  • Gotfredsen, Katrine Bendtsen (2014): Void Pasts and Marginal Presents: On Nostalgia and Obsolete Futures in the Republic of Georgia. In: Slavic Review, Vol. 73, No. 2. 246-264.
  • Frederiksen, Martin (2014): The Would-Be State: Reforms, NGOs ad Absent Presents in Postrevolutionary Georgia. In: Ethnographies of Absence in Contemporary Georgia.. Special issue of Slavic Review. 307-321.

Referenten: Dr. Sebastian Pranz and Klaus Neuburg  (Cologne)


Klaus Neuburg (*1976) and Sebastian Pranz (*1979), designers and publishers, co‑founded together with two additional publishers, the independent magazine FROH! featuring work by internationally renowned photographers, illustrators and journalists alongside works by up-and-coming artists. These newcomers – Klaus Neuburg read architecture at the University of Aachen, Sebastian Pranz holds a PhD in sociology – understand their work as part of an overall design mission for society at large. Neuburg and Pranz have held national and international workshops on magazine-making for the Goethe Institute, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the University of Hildesheim, to name but a few. As part of this work, they conceived magazines such as the German-Georgian venture Projekt mtkvari and NOUA magazine {}, developed in 2014 in the Republic of Moldova. In 2012, they founded Studio Zoo, a studio for corporate publishing where independent magazines, books and commissioned works for various clients are being created.

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