Christian Pentzold

Personal and collective memory-making are usually studied on large scales that bridge rather
extensive temporal distances, at least in human time. What is overlooked are the kinds of
ordinary phenomena mundane memories are made of. The routines of keeping and recurring
records, taking notes and planning the proximate future as well as representations thereof
and the tools used to accomplish such activities often seem neither especially consequential
nor important.
The concept of mundane memories provides a lens through which to examine the largely
ignored modes of day-to-day remembering that knit together our activities, events, relations,
materials and places of quotidian life along the chronological axis of past, present and future.
In their continuity and contingency mundane memories are a recurring trivial issue and a
pervasive exercise in which we find ourselves immersed. Often, they are mediated through
material relations involving objects and more or less smart technologies. Rather than being
of merely parochial interest then, mundane memories arrange and enable our daily
occupations in all walks of life. As such, their practices too have become a topic of cultural
representations and artistic reflection.

Addressing speakers from different sciences and humanities, from the arts and literature as
well as from museums, curatorial institutions and public agencies, the workshop explored the
practices and representations of mundane memories in artistic works, social organisations as
well as in media forms and technologies from both historic and current perspectives.

The workshop was organized by an interdisciplinary team of junior members of the KCL faculty.
It involved Mikka Lene Pers-Højholt, Department of Education & Professional Studies, Sanna Stegmaier, German Department, Sandra Borges Tavares, Department of Culture, Media &
Creative Industries , as well as Christian Pentzold, a 2015 Visiting Research Fellow in the
Department of Culture, Media & Creative Industries. It took place at King’s College London.