Breanna Shanahan was the first Jorisch Family Artist Residence participant at Museum der Moderne Salzburg. During her residency she created the work HeimatJagd / HomeHunting, 2017, which is connected to her own family history:
"Like many Canadians my blood is mixed with roots from around the globe, all four of my grandparents came from different countries meeting and growing in Canada’s major cities or rural lands. Being a second generation Canadian my home life is influenced by all of these heritages that don’t quite take full hold, but act as a foot-in-the-door to the different ways of life of my ancestors. Unless you are of native descent being Canadian means you both belong and don’t belong. I often find myself learning words, foods, traditions and cultural aspects of my heritages to feel more connected to them.
Austria was the home of my paternal grandmother and her family. How strange it was to discover this other heritage only recently, never feeling any connection to the Austrian people or culture and then suddenly finding out that I am part Austrian myself. When my Great-grandfather left Austria he did so under the guise of a Polish heritage, the children were no longer allowed to speak German, they hid their origins in Canada and settled in Alberta to escape from war and discrimination.
During the residency here in Salzburg I could not help but notice how at-home I would feel when encountering similar social spaces, objects and landmarks as I have during my childhood in Canada. This series of work HeimatJagd / HomeHunting takes images from my home in Canada, a city called Mississauga. It juxtaposes those images with blurred reflections of Austrian counterparts, seeking comfort in a new place with reference to comfort from familiarity.
Thank you to the Jorisch family for their generous donation to the Museum der Moderne Salzburg to help realize this residency program and for their additional artist support. Thank you to the all of the staff at the Museum der Moderne Salzburg for all of their help during this residency. You have made this an incredible experience. I would also like to thank Tina Teufel for all of her help in adjusting and acquiring the spaces and materials to make this work and her care and kindness this past month. Victoria Fahrengruber, thank you for translating this text, being my Artist Assistant while making this work and my new dear friend."