Before I Die I will Bake an Art Museum: The Granary
“Before I Die I Shall Bake a Cathedral”, the words by the Swedish poet Edith Södergran (1892–1923) from her poem Hope, gave the initial spark for my baking-based artistic endeavours. The poet writes about the rising dough and what a shame it is that she cannot bake a cathedral. My project plays with the actual possibilities of baking a building. She has been considering what buildings of power exist within the art communities of today that could be baked in the place of a cathedral. Should it be a museum, another type of art institution, the gallery, or perhaps the artist’s studio? What happens when you get to eat these buildings?
In this project I started by carefully examining the context in question, and highlights their different spatial, social, and temporal layers. For Fiskars, I creates a version of my ongoing ‘baking a museum’ project, in which I explore the relationship between human-made buildings, bread, and ritual. I baked small-scale sculptures using moulds created from selected architectural details of the Granary.
How long it will carry on for we do not know but it's our responsibility to hand it on
The title derives from a quote by Sylvia Alexander-Vine who initiated and participated in the West Hill Community Association, a non-profit association in Brighton, active since the 1970s. It’s in response to the question on what she thinks the future of the organisation looks like, asked during an interview in november 2015.
The work shown in the windows are part of a project by Louise Waite, exploring unseen, unproductive labour done by individual forces to help make a functioning community and organisation. The posters consist of 30 stills from a 15 min long performance video piece performed at the West Hill Hall in Brighton, in connection to the interview made with Sylvia Alexander-Vine. In the video performance the artist reenacts the work done by people when a gathering takes place at the hall, the preparations as well as the work afterwards. Central for the work is a list of rules used at West Hill Hall to be followed by everyone who uses the space. Number four concerns the way in which the furniture should be placed after being used.
The project has been shown three times to the public in various ways. The intention is to exhibit it in spaces that has a connection to self-organisation and non-profit involvement, letting the work resonate with the site itself. It was shown at Brighton University Gallery (uk) in 2016, at Röstånga Konsthall (swe) and Lansdown Sweet Shop (uk) in 2018.
All images are from Röstånga Konsthall and Lansdown Sweet Shop.
Sticks & Stones
During the first month of my stay at HIAP - Helsinki International Artist Programme I was asked to participate in an event named SABBAT:00, conspired by the curator Adwait Singh, hosted at the HIAP Gallery Augusta on June 29, 2018.
The churning of the butter, the kneading of the dough…
As I was exploring the processes of edible materials and their symbolic value during my stay at HIAP I decided to participate with a savoury work in progress to be ingested by the visitors. We watched the melting fires and touched the soft insides of rocks. Materials used followed a tradition of manual labour and following different stages to reach the height of its form to slowly melt away, harden and decay.
participating artists: Anni Puolakka, Louise Waite, Maarit Suomi-Väänänen, Matt Shilcock, Nestori Syrjälä, Petri Saarikko & Sasha Huber
*Dress Code : 'Back to Black' (basically anything black)
**[You could bring: apricots / peaches / plums / strawberries / cherries, raspberries / blueberries to munch]
In her book Caliban and the Witch: Women, the Body, and Primitive Accumulation, Silvia Federici views the transition to capitalism as an apocalyptic counterrevolution that “required the transformation of the body into a work-machine, and the subjugation of women to the reproduction of the work-force. Most of all, it required the destruction of the power of women which, in Europe as in America, was achieved through the extermination of the ‘witches.’  Similarly, works such as Arthur Evans’ Witchcraft and Gay Counterculture examine the ongoing ‘ecocides’ in the light of their precedents in institutionalized trials and witch hunts regimenting the ban on queer sensualities and alternate medical practices. Evans’ book presents a remarkable classed narrative of the systematic culling of paganism and its associative traits — ritual transvestism, open expression of sexuality, fertility rites etc., — with the organisational changes in society that became increasingly patriarchal and militaristic calling for progressively ascetic and repressive faiths. In the same breath it also recounts the survival of residual traces of these cultures and festivities underground well into the present times in the form of celebrations such as the Midsummer, the Night of All Souls (Halloween), and All Fools’ Day (April Fool’s Day). But perhaps most significantly, Evans highlights the thickening synonymity between religious heresy and sexual dissidence indicating that most witches that were persecuted during the Middle Ages were in fact queer men and women exhibiting signs of the old religion and ancient healing practices. Whilst these scholarships and ecofeminism at large have acquired their own critique primarily touching upon the problematic appropriation of ecological discourses by gynocratic paradigms, nevertheless, a parallel can be drawn between the systematic destruction of the power of women and queers through their construction as ‘witches’ that could be subsequently hunted and subjugated, and the gradual disenchantment and de-mystification of the landscape. Peter Gray of Scarlet Imprint summarizes this slow domestication neatly in his essay ‘Rewilding Witchcraft’:
Marching in lock-step with what used to be called mainstream, but is now mono- culture, we have disenchanted ourselves, handed over our teeth and claws and bristling luxuriant furs. 
Identifying witchcraft as a ‘quintessentially wild, ambivalent, ambiguous, queer’ force, often localised at the liminal zones such as ‘the hedge, the crossroads’, Gray champions it as a primordial force, historically allied to alterity, and one that can therefore act as a counterforce to neo-liberal schema. Subsequently, this 'blitzibition' explores the notion of the witch as a guardian summoned by the land; positioning them at the forefront of the war for the Great Mother, Gaiä. Conceived as a midsummer gathering of allies and conspirators ‘Sabbat: 00’ will mime the ancient song passed down to us along witchy lines of inheritance in a quest for forgotten wisdoms, remedies and manna with which to re-enchant ourselves, arm our politics, decolonize our praxis, sacralise the land, and reactivate the bond with the lost mother.
1 Silvia Federici, Caliban and the Witch: Women, the Body, and Primitive Accumulation (Brooklyn, NY: Autonomedia, 2004), pp. 63.
2 See Peter Gray, ‘Rewilding Witchcraft’ in Scalet Imprint (June 13, 2014) http://scarletimprint.com/2014/06/rewilding-witchcraft/
Text installation made for the basement of ONCA Gallery for the exhibition What Happens Now Is, in 2017. It speaks directly to the audience and explores the moment they share with the piece and the trust developed between artist and participant.
"You are reading this message and someone is watching you. Please keep your eyes on the paper in front of you. They are not a threat, you can keep quite calm. When you are reading this message the the time will not be the present anymore. I don't want to make things strange but it is true. Behind the door behind you there will be a clue to what’s been going on in this space. If you take a break from reading this you could go and have a look. Try not to draw any attention to yourself when you do it and come back when you’ve checked it out. What did you find? If you want to have a look again, if you feel unsure about it, please do. Do you want to have a look together? Please wait for me, I’ll be with you in 19 sentences."
Crooning for comfort
6 speakers, 6 minute sound on a loop
Site-specific sound installation made for Grand Parade consisting of the humming from six women, both professional and amateur, played through speakers placed in the ceiling in a university corridor.
Shown as part of the exhibition STUDIO SPILLAGE (UK) in 2016.
Wolf Lady is a two-part performance any (female) person can perform wherever they choose. Wolf Lady is out on a conquest. To take over.
Wolf Lady - The Conquest was produced during a interdisciplinary residency at the Ställbergs Gruva (Mine of Ställberg) when a group of cultural producers and artists took over the area the summer of 2013. The two week residency ended with a three day festival where people from both close and afar came to see the site specific works that had been produced.
The piece has so far been performed by Clara Gerdmar, Karin Linderoth, Moa Matilda Sahlin, Louise Magnusson and Jannine Rivel during DOPET Festival and Varde Ljus at Ställbergs Gruva 2013. Images are taken from when Wolf Lady was performed by Clara Gerdmar at Ställbergs Gruva 2013.
Wolf Lady - The Pack was a situation-specific version of Wolf Lady - The Conquest made especially for the opening of the spring exhibition at Gerlesborgsskolan Stockholm 2014. Both students, teachers and friends participated in the performance.
The piece was performed by Karolina, Filippa, Louise, Edith, Hilma, Xenia, Maja, Susanna, Vida, Hugo, Robin, Hanna, Sarah and Catti.