Artists announced for 8th Lofoten International Art Festival above the Arctic Circle

image000125 international artists have been invited to contribute – through new commissioned works and site-specific installations – to the festival that is celebrated as taking place in one of the most unusual cultural locations in the world: Lofoten – an archipelago located on the northwest coast of Norway, just above the Arctic Circle.

Deliberately without a permanent location, LIAF is inventing new venues for each edition by infiltrating and moving through the local landscape. LIAF 2013 takes its international participants and audiences to unusual sites such as a garage, a library, a shed, a hotel, a cinema, an Am-Car club, a residential house, a former shop, an old warehouse, the ocean and other public places.

Featured artists at LIAF 2013: Bani Abidi, Sven Augustijnen, Anne Böttcher, István Csákány, HC Gilje, Pedro Gómez-Egaña, Shilpa Gupta, Leslie Hewitt in collaboration with Bradford Young, David Horvitz, Adelita Husni-Bey, Sinisa Ilic, Adrià Julià, Mahmoud Khaled, Karl Larsson, Laida Lertxundi, Britta Marakatt-Labba, Nana Oforiatta Ayim, Oliver Ressler, Allen Ruppersberg, Walid Sadek, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Lisa Tan, Olivier Zabat, Knut Åsdam.

The appointed curators of LIAF 2013 – Bassam El Baroni (Egypt) Anne Szefer Karlsen (Norway) and Eva González-Sancho (Spain) – rephrased the title of the famous 1956 Richard Hamilton collage ‘Just what is it that makes today’s homes so different, so appealing?’ to question the current human predicament of being stuck in a continuous loop, where the predominant ideas that shape our world are unsustainable and unimaginative when it comes to solving everyday problems.

The curatorial attitude aims to create a reflection on how art can position itself as a profession and as a vocabulary within societies in which the protocol of contemporary institutional art practice is built on the idea of instigating, designing, or manufacturing some form of antagonism through its programming. The scarcity of art institutional structures in Lofoten offers LIAF 2013 an opportunity to immerse itself in the fabric of the local community, its domestic, commercial and public spaces while exploring the current moment’s global uneasiness.

LIAF count-down familiarising inserts: Starting this spring, LIAF 2013 familiarised the local public with its concept through monthly inserts, such as a talk by curator Charles Esche, a screening of Picasso in Palestine (Khaled Hourani/Rashid Masharawi, 2012) at the community house Arbeideren in Kabelvåg, or the two-week workshop by philosopher and writer Aaron Schuster at Nordland Vocational College of Art and Film in Kabelvåg. A donation to the library collection of biennial catalogues from around the world also took place during an intervention at the Vågan public library in Svolvær. Starting July, the poet Esther Ramón and artist Karl Larsson are appearing through text interventions in the local newspaper Lofotposten and on the island of Skrova, the insert appears as a sculpture by Rex Ifelaja Akinruntan, an element of the upcoming film project for LIAF 2013 by the artist Nana Oforiatta-Ayim. In August a performance work will be staged by Adelita Husni-Bey with Dexter and Maya Hanoomansingh, as well as Rebecca Salvadori at the Kulturhuset in Svolvær. The last episode of the inserts take place in September, where a design workshop by Luna Maurer from Moniker will be organised at the Vågan Primary and Secondary School in Svolvær.

About LIAF
LIAF is a festival for contemporary art taking place in Lofoten on the northwest coast of Norway every second year. LIAF presents works by international artists in a local and site-specific context and seeks to be an open, experimental and including meeting place for artists, audience and locals. LIAF acknowledges the complexity of place and seeks to be a discursive, engaged and social platform for different positions creating dialogue between the local and global. The prospect of developing and discovering new knowledge and understanding through art sits at the core of the festival.

The festival was initiated in 1991, as a local art exhibition with a broad range of expressions and with a regional focus. In 1999 the festival was given an international profile, changing its name to Lofoten International Art Festival. Since 2009 the festival has been administrated through the North Norwegian Art Center (NNKS) and the LIAF Board. Every edition has taken place in Svolvær, but since 2011 the festival also takes place in Kabelvåg, where around 1,700 of Lofoten’s 24,000 inhabitants live.

For more information, please visit: