Foto ukjent. Med tillatelse fra Sør-Troms museum.

SPARKS

LIAF 2024

Participating artists: Astrid Ardagh, Ayo, Birgit Hagen, Dávvet Bruun-Solbakk, Eileen Myles, Elisabeth Brun, Elise Macmillan, Flis Holland, Hans Ragnar Mathisen, Ilija Wyller, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, KINOBOX (Ruth Aitken & Sarah Schipschack), Lilla Georgine Hansen, Livingstone Office for Contemporary Art—LoCA (Anawana Haloba, Kabila Kyowa Stéphane, Banji Chona, Bwanga 'BennyBlow' Kapumpa, Listening at Pungwe (Memory Biwa & Robert Machiri)), Michael Tsegaye, Monica Edmondson, Morten Torgersrud + Ellisif Wessel, NORDTING/Amund Sjølie Sveen, NODES Collective (Elisabeth Brun, Ivar Kjellmo, Gusztáv Hámos, Katja Pratschke, Nicole C. B. Pedersen, Rune Mikkelborg), Simen Engen Larsen, Siri Hjorth og Sebastian Makonnen Kjølaas, Sissel Solbjørg Bjugn, Sørfinnset Skole/ the nord land, Viktor Bomstad & Magnus Holmen, Wong Kit Yi.

Island Eye Island Ear, Lofoten 2024: You Nakai, Norimichi Hirakawa, Kei Komachiya, Hiroko Myokam, Katsuya Ishida, Daisuke Funato and all from SIAF Lab., Jacob Kirkegaard, Robert Monnier & Gill Eatherley, Margaretha Åsberg. Island Eye Island Ear for Knavelskär, Sweden, originally conceived by David Tudor, in 1974, in collaboration with Billy Klüver, Fujiko Nakaya, Margaretha Åsberg, and Jackie Matisse. Advisory board: Phil Edelstein, Composers Inside Electronics and Julie Martin, Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T.).

Curated by: Kjersti Solbakken
Location: Multiple venues in Svolvær (Norway)
Press preview September 20
Opening weekend September 20–22

Lofoten International Art Festival – LIAF is the longest-running art biennial in Scandinavia. Presenting works by local and international artists in a location-conscious context, LIAF seeks to be an open and experimental meeting place for artists, contributors, collaborators and audiences. LIAF does not have a set venue but takes place at different locations in Lofoten each time it is held. LIAF is organized by North Norwegian Art Centre in collaboration with LIAF Artistic Advisory Board.

Curated by Kjersti Solbakken and entitled 'SPARKS', Lofoten International Art Festival 2024 is inspired by the history of the Lofoten Line: a large-scale national initiative from 1861 which sought to make the Lofoten fishery more efficient. Through its 170 km of underwater cables and land lines, the facility constituted the country's first telegraph line outside the main telecommunications network. During the long, cold winter months when the Lofoten fishery took place, a temporary connection was established between nine fishing hamlets. The telegraphed messages conveyed information about the movements of the skrei—a migrating cod that swims every year from the Barents Sea to Lofoten to spawn. The messages could also give warning of upcoming storms and bad weather. Read more at nnks.no.

LIAF 2024 will constitute a vibrant network of temporary connections which, in dialogue with a wide range of collaborators, through art projects, collective approaches and cross-institutional partnerships, will help reveal what the Lofoten Line could look like today. The festival will consist of a large exhibition spread across a number of venues alongside a programme of lectures and readings, performances, concerts, workshops and talks.

In addition to the main exhibition in Svolvær, the festival will take place at various satellite arenas through a program that launched in April.

Collaborators: Sørvågen Radio/Museum Nord, Stiftelsen Gamle Å, Skrova Fyr, Svolvær Kunstforening, Sør-Troms Museum/Trastad Samlinger, Manndalen Husflidslag, NŌUA, Nordlandsmuseet—Bådåddjo/Buvvda Musea, Stormen, KINOBOX, Livingstone Office for Contemporary Art—LoCA, SIAF-LAB., Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T.), Composers Inside Electronics, Metode/ROM for kunst og arkitektur, The Kitchen, Sørfinnset Skole, Filmkunstskolen i Kabelvåg, Grenselandmuseet/The Borderland Museum, Vågan Historielag, Festspillene i Nord-Norge/Arctic Arts Festival, The Finnish-Norwegian Cultural Institute (FINNO), Bodø 2024, Worlding Northern Art (WONA) UiT, The Oulu Museum of Art, Vågan Havnevesen KF, Árran Julevsáme guovdásj, Hallingdal Museum/Stiftelsen Buskerudmuseet, Kristiania University College and Vågan Bibliotek.

Supported by
LIAF and North Norwegian Art Centre receive operational support from the Arts Council Norway, the counties of Finnmark, Troms and Nordland and the municipality of Vågan.

LIAF 2024 has received project support from KOROs Art Programme for Local Communities (LOK), Samfunnsløftet - Sparebank1 Nord-Norge, Arts Council Norway, Bodø 2024, The Norwegian Consulate General in New York, OCA, The Relief Fund for Visual Artists (BKH), Mondrian Foundation, The Bergesen Foundation, Sasakawa Foundation, The Norwegian Embassy in Tokyo, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Konstnärsnamden, Goethe Institute Norway, EU-Japan Fest, Nordic Council of Ministers, The Norwegian-Finnish Cultural Foundation, The Finnish-Norwegian Cultural Institute (FINNO), The Norwegian Embassy in Paris, The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Stockholm, The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Copenhagen and The Fritt Ord Foundation.

Kjersti Solbakken (b. 1984, Valnesfjord) is a freelance curator and writer based in Oslo. She is currently appointed as curator for the Lofoten International Art Festival (LIAF) 2024, organised by the North Norwegian Art Centre. Between 2017 and 2022, she was director of Kunstnerforbundet, one of Scandinavia's oldest artist-run exhibition spaces. During this period, the studio community and mediation initiative Atelier Kunstnerforbundet was established in Kunstnerforbundet's own premises. She has been director of Galleri Format and Fotogalleriet and has curated exhibitions for institutions such as Telemark Art Center, Hordaland Art Center, Vestlandsutstillingen, Stormen kunst/dájdda and Astrup Fearnley Museet to name a few. In 2007 she established Feil forlag and from 2011-2013 she ran the project space Holodeck. Solbakken holds an MA in curatorial practice from the Faculty of Art, Music and Design, University of Bergen, and BAs in visual arts from the Academy of Fine Arts in Oslo as well as the Nordland Art and Film School in Kabelvåg. In 2023 she was curator for Øyepå organised by Kulturtanken and the National Museum, Oslo, and in 2022 she was awarded the curator residency at the International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP) through OCA.