Textilfabrik Cromford


Textilfabrik Cromford, or the Cromford textile factory, in Ratingen is considered the first factory on the European continent. As a cotton spinning mill, it was already connected to global supply chains by the end of the 18th century. The mass production of cotton clothing that mechanization had made possible was perceived by contemporaries as progress. The new permanent exhibition in the spinning mill, on the other hand, focuses on the consequences of the (colonial) exploitation of nature and man.

Simone Glück


Futur II | 26.03.2022

For Textilfabrik Cromford’s newly designed permanent exhibition designer Simone Glück will create an artistic-media application with an interactive interface in collaboration with author Svenja Jessen. The central theme is cotton as a raw material. Cotton came to Ratingen under the auspices of colonial trade relations. From an interdisciplinary perspective, the installation conveys historical and contemporary contexts surrounding the environmental and social impacts of the cotton, textile, and fashion industries.

The museum thus reflects the global integration of the textile factory into the international cotton trade from an interdisciplinary perspective. Simone Glück’s interface design reveals the network-like connections between the multi-layered facets of the subject. Short, anecdotal texts by Svenja Jessen provide information on the colonial background of cotton cultivation as well as on the traces of colonial history that are still visible today in unfair supply chains, exploitation, and environmental pollution in the so-called “low-wage countries”.

Parisa Karimi


Futur III | 26.03.2022 - 02.04.2022

Parisa Karimi is designing an immersive projection mapping for the façade of the Textilfabrik Cromford mansion. In this work, the media artist and director critically examines the concept of progress in industrial modernity and traces the consequences of the constant striving for growth. The site-specific work interweaves archival footage, set pieces of retold history, fictional elements, and animation to create a multi-perspective narrative of image and sound.

From a postcolonial perspective, Parisa Karimi refers to the history of the site and to today’s cotton and textile industries. In addition, she invites residents of Ratingen to develop speculative narratives together. Her projection interweaves different narrative threads that audiovisually transform the space: In it, the hearing and visibility of marginalized voices and their stories are just as important as those of international activists who question the interpretive power and prosperity of the global North.


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