Over the course of more than two years, beginning in 2015, the Weltmuseum Wien has set up ten temporary stations around Vienna and invited the broad public to bring an object meaningful to them and to tell its story.
Alongside the entire collection of the 150 object-stories, the exhibition highlights a selection of 20 of them. These objects are portrayed in Tal Adler’s photographic object-portraits in their ‘usual place’ – at home on a shelve, in a box or under the bed, in the pocket, in the hand, or on one’s head – and as video interviews with the owners of these objects and with other people talking about these objects from their own perspective.
A special interview format developed for this project has produced around 150 intimate, rich and captivating stories. From simple, daily objects such as a key or a necklace, to specific or rare objects such as a box of a missing film or a handmade ritual mask, the object owners shared stories of love and friendship, loss and longing, belonging and alienation, faith, passion, travels and adventures, migration, assimilation, terror and hope.
Throughout the duration of the project, photos of the objects and summaries of the stories have been gradually uploaded to the project’s page at the museum’s website, thus forming an open-access archive. Now that the archive is open, the public is once again invited to look at the objects, read the stories, and contribute their own perspectives on these objects. Multiple perspectives on the same object can enhance our understanding of how we relate to our objects and to each other.