by Christoph Keller
Who owns the past? Are museum archives and their re-collections of cultural heritage a cult of the dead — and if so, are we living in a necropolis? This book on photography, cemeteries, and the archive evolved out of an experimental research project at the Bibliotheca Hertziana in Rome, with its immense collection of canonic photographs from the history of art and architecture. An artist’s book, it takes on the form of a description of an unfinished film in five acts — a cinematic fragment, so to speak: DOPOSTORIA. The title essay by Christoph Keller is complemented by two contributions on burial cultures in prehistory and in modernity from the archaeologist Maria Clara Martinelli and the modern historian Carolin Kosuch. A sequence of collages at the back of the book conjures up a phantasmagorical journey through an ancient-modern Rome.