FINDING THE MISSING
CROSS CULTURE MEETING POINT
"Nemoland (means 'no man's land') is the hidden place where
the 'Sinthome' might be found; the meaningful missing link which
causes 'jouis-sense'; enjoyment in meaning, by exploring lost landscape and secret language."
In Holland Nemoland is situated in the Amsterdam Westerpark, a hidden area of wild and neglected area, near the centre and in the middle of intensive urban functions.
In Poland, Nemoland is situated on a estate of 34 hectares in the county of Stara Kamienica, between the villages Chromiec, Kopaniec and Mala Kamienica in the Sudety area of Polish Lower Silesia. It is situated in the borderland of central Europe (Euroregio Nysa), just between Prague, Dresden, Berlin and Wroclaw, in the Jelenia Góra district. Nemoland is located at a crossroads where a large mountainous area borders on hills with old farms, densely grown small valleys and many little picturesque villages. Just the place for endless roaming and exploring! It lies hidden between the Isermountains (Góry Izerskie), Giant Mountains (Karkonosze) and the Bóbr Valley Park (Park Doliny Bobru). The area offers a unique combination of unspoiled natural agrarian landscape, many monuments, castles, archaeological sites, nature reserves and beautiful old villages. Because the region is situated in a borderland which was strongly dominated by the Polish (there are also early traces of Celtic, Walloon and Sorb settlers), the Bohemian/ Austrian, the Prussian/German, the Russian and finally again the Polish, the region has always been a crossroads of cultures and traditions, and as borderland in fact a "nobody's land" (literal meaning of Nemoland). In 2003 this valuable cultural en natural landscape is threatened by mining plans, which might affect and devastate the landscape forever. The Pol Skal company tries by all means to explore a 100 ha open air stone mine to dig minerals.
Nemoland offers many activities like walking-trips, legend-workshops, educational, art and health-programs, excursions, handicraft-workshops, legendprograms for children, exchange programs for students, working holidays for volunteers.
Nemo: from Holland to Poland
Nemo is a Dutch association of nature-oriented walkers, founded in 1988. Aim of Nemo is promotion of rambling, sustainable tourism and protection of the countryside. Nemo means "nobody", a nick name for travellers and ramblers, called after Jules Vernes' Captain Nemo, and Windsor Mckay's cartoon-character Little Nemo. In Holland the association has developed into a national pressure group that works for the interests of walkers, promoting sustainable tourism. Nemo is a non governmental, non-profit organization financed by its members. In 1998 Nemo has opened a visitors' centre in Stara Kamienica, Poland. The centre should be a part of a broader project for rural development in the district of Jelenia Góra. For the administration of the centre Nemo has founded a separate Polish organization: Fundacja Nemo. Nemo expects this project in Poland to produce experience, knowledge and possibilities that can be applied at a later stage elsewhere in Poland or other European countries. Nemo aims to develop a practical model, in which realizing facilities for walkers is the catalyst for an integral development involving protection of landscape and cultural heritage, local skills and improvement of socio-economic aspects.
a cure from symptom to sinthome - enjoying the language of the landscape
After many years of pioneering in Poland, Nemo developed a new concept for her activities in Stara Kamienica: the Sinthome. Not only for Dutch people and the people from the Polish, Chech and German borderregion, but for all who feels attracted by crossroads and crossing borders!
Sinthome is a cure by ‘enjoyment in language’, it is meant as a passage (walkabout) ‘from symptom to sinthome’: from the ‘black triangle without language’ to the landscape of myths, legends and stories. The cure offers the black triangle not as an abyss but as a gate from the lost land to the promised land. From Nemoland to Wonderland. This Wonderland is not meant as a prefab Walt Disney Utopia, like Pandora in Avatar, but as 'earthship', where the reality of nature is captain.
Nemoland offers this ‘cure’ by:
A new concept and a new logo: three connected circles
The symbol of Nemoland are three circles linked together. For Nemo these connected circles are a symbol of the three different European cultures which shaped this wonderful region, once known as the Toscane of Middle Europe: 1. the Bohemian/Austrian, 2. Prussian/German and Slavonic/Polish. In communist time the region became known as ‘the black triangle’ because pollution killed almost all woods and animals. And most cultural monuments got neglected and ruined. Nowadays mining companies are ruining and threatening the region again, creating a new ‘black triangle’.
Going ‘through the black triangle’ Nemo wants to offer a cure to the black powers devastating the region, not by fighting, but by mobilizing and using the language of nature and landscape to stop the devastation of the landscape. Reading, listening, dancing and walking through the history and legends of the landscape is a way to give language to the landscape and the people who lived and lives there. The black triangle could be a gate instead of fate. A gate to enjoy the language of the landscape and the people. It is the best way to protect and to maintain the landscape, and help the people to appreciate and sustain the landscape.
Sinthome: the missing link
Sinthome is a cure because it offers a ‘rite de passage’, as a walkabout through the three circles’, making a new link to restore the broken circles:
- passing the gate-keepers and entrepreneurs of the black triangle
- passing the dominating powers of the ruling (linguistic) systems
- passing the pitfall of the real, the black vortex
INTRODUCTION TO THE SINTHOME
Since 1998 Nemo is pioneering in Poland by setting up a meeting point for cross cultural contact in Stara Kamienica. The philosophy of Nemo is that members, volunteers and guests attribute something of themselves to Nemoland.
Thus Nemoland is created in an organic way and is developed by the involvement of visitors. Visitors are not seen as consumers, but as participants. The aim is to explore the secrets of the Polish countryside and to promote sustainable development of the region. Not only for Dutch people and the people from the Polish, Chech and German region, but for everybody who likes crossroads and to cross borders!
Since 1998 Nemo brought more then 3000 Dutch people to Stara Kamienica to learn and taste the Polish village life and build Nemoland. From them more then 100 students from Dutch colleges and universities followed internships, workshops and did research to sustainable and ecological development. Nemo also got (Matra) subsidy from the Dutch government to support Polish village associations and to strengthen the local community. And seven years already Nemo organized the ‘Dutch Day’ in Stara Kamienica to exchange Dutch and Polish culture. Since 2009 Nemo organized the Crossroads Festival in Jelenia Góra, as a cultural event focused on cross border literature, art and film.
Meanwhile Nemo collected stories and legends of the former German and present Polish inhabitants, because Nemo feels that oral history is a source of hidden secrets and treasures in this region. Nemo discovered that the landscape of Stara Kamienica is a book of unknown stories. Walking could be a way of discovering, touching and reading these stories.
For the workers of Nemo their ‘Polish adventure’ in Stara Kamienica was a long and difficult process of ‘trial-and-error’, trying to learn Polish language, habits, history and even cooking. From 2003 they faced the threat of total destruction by the Pol Skal mining plans in Mala Kamienica, just opposite their front-door. Working as foreigners in Poland they felt like exploring an open mine, not of stones, but of stories and legends: the hidden treasures of Polish village life. After 16 years of digging, the Nemo-workers want to show what they found! That is why Nemoland of Nemo will be re-opened in 2014 with a new concept, a new logo and new activities.
FROM SYMPTOM TO SINTHOME
By some fate of history and maybe also climate and geology, the area around Nemoland has always been the centre between three dominant influences in Middle Europe. It was literally a crossroads and meeting point of different cultures, religions and ideologies. Often the region flourished by this triple development, but in the last centuries the region became a victim and literally a ‘black triangle’; the no-man’s land of Europe. A lost land, a landscape which lost its language and meanings.
Once the area was known as the "Toscane of Middle Europe", one big landscape park with a huge quantity of castles and ‘Kurorten’. After the war the area around Nemoland became a ‘lost land’, because the people who lived there and the people who came to live there both lost their native land. Big industrial companies ruined the nature and many monuments were ruined. Now a mining company wants to explore a open stone mine in Stara Kamienica and ruin this beautiful landscape. If we are not able to stop these plans, one of the most beautiful areas of Poland and Middle Europe will be forever a black triangle.
Which were these three powers of history, which shaped this crossing place and finally the black triangle?
THREE CONNECTED CIRCLES AND THE MISSING LINK
The three connected circles, known as Venn diagram or Borromean Circles are a a topological model to understand and define human life and history. Each circle should be able to connect the other two, and if one circle is breaking, all circles are loosened. In modern logic the three connected circles are used to understand and define triple relations. They are used already by Indians, Celts and Normans to define the three main aspects of life. The early Christians used the three connected circles to explain the mystery of the Holy Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Based on this history and the philosophy of Freud, the French psycho-analyst Jacques Lacan used the three circles as symbol for:
1. "the real" (nature, Chaos, biology, being, essence, the freudian ‘Es’)
2. "the symbolic" (culture, ruling system of language, meaning, the social order, the Other, the Law, the freudian ‘Über-ich’)
3. "the fantasy" (body-image, imagination, concepts, ideas, the psyche, the private, the freudian ‘Ich’)
European history showed the dramatic consequences when circles got
loosened and broken. The main European dominant and authoritarian
systems/circles broke away from the nature, and lead to destruction of
the nature (the real/essence), ranking of the imaginary (borderline,
neurotic, pervert, narcism/autism) and in the middle/interspace:
psychotic holes (=lost image/identification of language, landscape,
body). The circle of imagination has been broken and loosened, which
caused Lost land, broken time, Nobody’s land. Nemoland.
The sinthome thus designates a signifying formulation beyond analysis, a kernel of enjoyment immune to the efficacy of the symbolic. The sinthome is what 'allows one to live' by providing a unique organisation of jouissance. The task of analysis thus becomes, in one of Lacan's last definitions of the end of analysis, to identify with the sinthome. For Lacan, the symptom is the fixed manner in which subjects enjoy their unconscious. The sinthome Is unanalysable. Lacan introduces the term in 1975, as the title for the 1975-6 seminar, which is both a continuing elaboration of his topology, extending the previous seminar's focus on the BORROMEAN KNOT, and an exploration of the writings of James Joyce. Through this coincidentia oppositorum - bringing together mathematical theory and the intricate weave of the Joycean text – Lacan redefines the psychoanalytic symptom in terms of his final topology of the subject.
De wandel-academie is er voor nieuwsgierige wandelaars, die de
achterkant van het landschap willen verkennen, hun eigen leven als
onverhard voetpad ervaren en die door willen denken over de ideeën
die tijdens het wandelen naar boven dwarrelen.
De wandel-academie biedt een combinatie van wandelen, educatie, debat en bezinning. Op onze 'hogeschool van het wandelen' kun je niet afstuderen in bewegingskunde, wandelfilosofie of de sociale geschiedenis van het zwerven, maar je krijgt wel de gelegenheid het wandelen te verbinden met natuur, spiritualiteit en thema's uit de mythologie, filosofie, antropologie, psychologie, geschiedenis en cultuurhistorie. De wandel-academie heeft geen complete opleiding, maar biedt, met je eigen kennis en ervaring als startpunt, een leerzame wandelroute door het onbekende Polen.
3. kennis van natuur en landschap
4. lokale Duitse en Poolse geschiedenis
5. het Poolse platteland en de effecten van politieke/sociale ontwikkelingen in de actualiteit
6. de Poolse taal en cultuur; en omgekeerd Polen laten kennis maken met vreemde talen en buitenlandse gasten
7. samenwerking en kontakt met de Poolse omgeving: boeren, kerk, kunstenaars, scholen
3. wandelingen, arrangementen, groepsreizen
4. jaarlijks cultureel evenement in het dorp
5. tijdschrift, readers, internet-site e.a. publicaties
2. Thema Verhalen: beleven van sagen en legenden van het Isergebergte bij de Verhalenput en op de Heksenberg,
3. Thema 2e Wereldoorlog. Excursie naar museum concentratiekamp Gross Rosen en de ondergrondse complexen Riese
4. Workshop Glas in Lood bij plaatselijke kunstenaar in Antoniów
5. Poolse taalcursus door docenten van de dorpsschool uit Kopaniec
6. Verzorgde cultuurreizen
7. Wandelexcursies op zoek naar kastelen, bergtoendra's, mijnen, kristallen, pelgrimsoorden, watervallen, industriële archeologie, krachtvelden enz.
8. Individuele wandelarrangementen, eten bij de boer, bergtochten
9. Cultureel festival in Stara Kamienica: Hollandse Dag
Workshop Landschap en verlangen - Wandelen met Lacan
Een workshop die bestaat uit een combinatie van leren, lezen,
hardop nadenken en wandelen.
Tijdens een workshop in het Nemo Centrum worden de centrale begrippen van Lacan verhelderd door ze te verbinden met het lokale landschap, de geschiedenis en de Poolse omgeving. Naast Lacan wordt ook geput uit het werk van de schrijvers Nescio en Robert Walser om de ideeën van Lacan beter te duiden, mede aan de hand van het artikel Wandelen en waanzin in dit nummer waarin centrale begrippen van Lacan verwerkt zijn.
* introductie-bijeenkomst en kennismaking in Amsterdam, voorbespreking van de weekthema's
* video over het Nemo Centrum, informatie over Polen: Pools Café 14 maart
* reader met teksten van en over Lacan
Terug in Nederland
Rol van de begeleider
Tijd, deelnemers, verzorging
Wandelacademie bestaat al 2338 jaar
Nemoland Polen biedt alle benodigde faciliteiten: gastenvoorzieningen, centrale ruimten en een uitgebreid netwerk van voetpaden op een eigen terrein van 34 ha. en in de directe omgeving. De gastenvoorzieningen zijn sober en van de gasten wordt verwacht dat zij meehelpen het centrum en de voetpaden te onderhouden.