Bridge Guard Residency • Štúrovo, Slovakia • www.bridgeguard.org
We support artists, scientists and personalities from other professions who work on projects which place emphasis on uniting, connecting, and bridging.
Our residents are called Bridge Guards. Next to the work on his or her own project, the most important duty of the Bridge Guard consists of observing the bridge every day and of recording the observations in the Bridge Log. Additionally, the bridge guard is expected to work with children, to discuss with high school students and communicate with the public, thus building bridges to the people in the town. The residency organises every first Saturday of June the AquaPhone festival. At beginning of fifties, the bridge between Štúrovo (Slovakia) and Esztergom (Hungary) was in ruins. It was almost impossible to get in touch or communicate with relatives and friends on the other side of Danube. People would go down to the river, mostly on windless evenings, to talk to each other. The water carried the sound of short messages, often encoded, to the other bank half a kilometre away. The AquaPhone performance refers to this phenomenon, honouring all the lives whose secrets had at one time been entrusted to Danube, recalling this testimony of people's yearning to talk together, and of their inventive genius bridging borders and distances under difficult conditions.