Barbara Borèiè

Damijan Kracina & Katarina Toman Kracina: Marmelade
DVD, Ljubljana 2004, 4'

Are you familiar with that tingling feeling somewhere that emerges around the root of your tongue when you eat marmalade without bread and butter? The marmalade sticks to your palate and its taste lingers in your mouth for a long time. It’s that special home-made marmalade, saturated with sugar. In the video Marmalade, we get to know yet another, truly practical usage of that sweet mélange. In some parts, they once used to spread it on the tiles, which were keeping the heat of the wooden stove apart from making the kitchen corner look pretty. And that “glue” would hold for years.

This is the story that unfolds in the form of narrative with a practical test in this warm home video presentation. At first, it gives the impression of a documentary. The camera is still, the scenes undirected. We see a sequence of three frames, all taken from more or less the same angle. We notice no editing interventions. The shooting is live, by hand-held camera, the sounds are real, and we hear the comments of all persons involved. The picture shows two persons, a grandma and her great-granddaughter. The other two voices are acusmatic. One must be the voice of the person who at once prompts the happening and records it. The other utters something softly and discretely every once in a while. A family. Through the conversation with grandma and grandson, we learn about the recipe that is straightforward enthralling in its simplicity. There must be a pinch of magic somewhere in-between, but now this already forgotten skill is passing on to the third generation right in front of our eyes. Through game and absorption. That singular cultural heritage subtly reveals to us a whole century of changes and differences. Yes, the marmalades we buy nowadays in the stores are far from this. And they definitely have no tiny hexes and secrets.