Under Dette Lyset / Under This Light (2016)
Multi-channel video, dimensions variable
This installation shows an assortment of objects that seem to move endlessly through time in the natural surroundings of the islands of Træna, Norway. The objects are placed out of context in the wild landscape, a hybrid form of photograph and video, still-life and landscape. Formed from time-lapse assemblages of thousands of photos, the “object-videos” show the light and shadow movement created by the northern sun over a twenty-four hour period, compressed down to minutes. With no end and no beginning, they share the strange timelessness of the Arctic Circle.
The object in each video was picked in collaboration with the people of Træna. Through a series of conversations, each was asked to contribute a physical thing to be photographed, something that connected them to the region. Each object or memento was a departure point for memories and histories of individuals, families, houses, and towns in the Nordland region. Just by virtue of being chosen, each memento can speak for those whose natural tendency might be to not say much. Yet the videos allows the objects to speak for themselves, to suggest to viewers the stories that might be behind them, and the others that might be shared by many.
Together, these representations speak about Træna as a place more than about any individual. The ancientness of the landscape, the remoteness, the weather, the patterns of life and work in this environment, the food, survival, and community. Each object seems at first to be personal and specific, yet their shared vulnerability to time is communal and universal. The installation becomes, like the generous people of Nordland, a balance of intimacy and opacity. Taken together, the videos are a colony of memories, a little village all their own.