Programme, International

The great industry: have a peek behind the dark curtains of a once-celebrated manufacturing plant

The MUAR – Musée vun der Aarbecht (Museum of Work) is a project initiated within the framework of the European Capital of Culture Esch2022 and the first museum of work in the country that aims to highlight and explore topics of the world of work from the perspective of the past, the present and the future (“muar” means “tomorrow” in Luxembourgish).

Over the last few months, the interactive exhibition Working Class Heroes at the Musée FERRUM in the Schungfabrik in Tétange has introduced three important personalities from Luxembourg’s working world to all visitors. Until 25 September, visitors have the opportunity to get to know the socio-political works of Jean-Pierre Bausch (1891-1935), Léon Weirich (1878-1942) and Jean Schortgen (1880-1918).

Then, from October to December 2022, MUAR will present The Great Industry exhibition from Kaunas, the Lithuanian city that also holds the title of European Capital of Culture this year. The exhibition is curated by the Lithuanian artist Auksė Petrulienė. Since 2017, a collective of contemporary artists has been exploring the fundamental contradictions between history and fiction, authentic knowledge and illusion, man and machine, horror and humour in collaboration with former factory managers and workers in Kaunas. Their research illuminates the grotesque aspects of the everyday life of Soviet factory workers who were constantly living in contradiction between the official Soviet public sphere and the Lithuanian private sphere.

“The Great Industry”, whose title already suggests an ironic take on the subject, is the third exhibition within a cycle that was initiated in 2017. Through documentary photographs, examples of industrial products and works of contemporary art, it explores the pathological symptoms of the Soviet industry.

In order to create a link with the Schungfabrik in Tétange, the exhibition focuses mainly on the Inkaras factory, which was on the one hand famous for its sneakers (a type of Soviet “Converse” of poor quality, which were highly sought after at the time) and on the other hand marked the birth of the first national workers’ union in Lithuania after its employees went on a hunger strike in the year 2000.

Practical information

Exhibition: 07.10. – 17.12.
Venue: Espace Kirscht – Musée FERRUM (14, rue Pierre Schiltz, L-3786 Tétange).
Opening hours: Thursday, Friday 4-8 pm / Saturday, Sunday 2-6 pm.
Admission: 5 € (free for students under 26)