Unrealised project. The use of the original recording was not granted permission by the Estate of Susan Sontag.
While researching for the project in the Image and Sound Archive of the Museum Joanneum, Graz, I came across a recording of Susan Sontag, reading two of her own stories at the Steirischer Herbst Literatursymposium in Graz on the 11th November 1982.
Neil Cummings and I begun negotiating a release of the recording from the Archive with the intention of producing a CD we called Gratis that was to be made available for free during the Protections exhibition, it was to become a gift from us, the artists as part of the Generosity Broadcasting House a larger project that we developed for the Kunsthaus Graz.
Gratis… consists of a recording of Susan Sontag, one of America’s most influential intellectuals lending her voice by reading two of her own stories at the Steirischer Herbst, Literatursymposium Graz on November 11th 1982.
A text is always a memory, a memory of an already disappeared past or a past that has never been present. In this sense, everything is always already a text – and it is necessary to lend the text a voice. This lending of one’s voice to the text is a generous act because it gives materiality to the text. It makes momentarily present something that would otherwise have remained absent. (abstract from Peter Zeillinger’s letter to the artists NC + ML)