Looking through the iron curtain

by Anja Medved

Nova Gorica and Gorizia are completely different, even at a first sight. Gorizia is a traditional urban centre proudly wearing the charm of its thousand year old history, while Nova Gorica is one of the few entirely modern cities, conceived in a future oriented socialist spirit.They belong to different states and in the past they also belonged to different social systems although they are both located in the same geographical area and together compose one complete urban entity. People living here had to adapt to the presence of the border in their everyday life. For them, 20 December 2007 was of historic importance. For the first time in as many as sixty years, the two cities could breath without customs officers and border posts. For Nova Gorica, this was a completely new experience, for its construction only began after the border had been established. On 20 December 2007 therefore, a former customs officers’ hut was transformed into a “video confessionary” to which people living on both sides of the border were invited to “confess” their smuggling “sins” and to forever let go of their border “guilt”. Some of thus entrusted memories, together with fragment footages from family and film archives, reveal two different realities brought to life simultaneously in the same place. Together they narrate the story of an absurdity inherent to all the border areas in the world.


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