Pass by a tree or let some object pass by a tree, but each time differently. That is the rule of the game – in a video by Elina Brotherus.
All runners have as many inflated balloons as possible tied to their bodies. Once the balloons are in place, they run a normal 220-yard race. That is the rule of the game – in another video by Elina Brotherus.
18-31 October we show five video works by Elina Brotherus from the series called Règle du jeu (rules of the game). Here you can see Elina Brotherus following various instructions from other artists’ performance works. For example, she is running with balloons tied to her body and is passing a tree several times with different gaits.
Elina Brotherus (b. 1972) is an internationally renowned photographer and video artist from Finland. Her works are often autobiographical and are about artistic creation. She often thematizes the body and its relation to the landscape, to objects, to other bodies, and to art.
In the winter of 2021-22, the Nordic House in the Faroe Islands will be showcasing works by ten prominent Nordic video artists. Thank you to Elina Brotherus (FI), J. Tobias Anderson (SE), Lillibeth Cuenca Rasmussen (DK), Egill Sæbjørnsson (IS), Jón Sonni Jensen (FO), Torbjørn Rødland (NO), Ann-Sofi Sidén (SE), Alda Mohr Eyðunardóttir (FO), Lauri Astala (FI) and Sabina Jacobsson (NO).
About Video Art
Video art is special. It brought time and movement into visual art, made space for ideas and concepts to take center stage, introduced technology, and linked visual art to film and dance, performance, and poetry. Video art has made activism part of artistic practice, erased the boundaries between art and the surrounding society, and has laid bare how closely related art and critical thinking are.
Since its dawn in the 1960s, video art has experimented with different formal approaches that reinforce critical reflection. Its characteristic lightness and flexibility allowed for an inquisitive and open approach, where the art form itself was tested and stretched again and again. Not unlike the scientific method. The systematic, analytical, and reflexive elements of the artistic process became more evident with video art. At the same time, these virtues associated with critical thinking were infused with a wild and quirky streak, constantly pushing boundaries. This distinctive and exquisite blend is still palpable in much video art.
In this manner, video art trains us to perceive the world in new ways, to see new possibilities, see what is not immediately visible. It teaches us to doubt, ask questions, identify new thought patterns, and see new contexts. Video art is not merely interested in what reality looks like, but also in how we perceive it. Norms, values, and fixed notions are constantly challenged in this multi-faceted genre, which always insists on critical thinking.
Because critical thinking is a precondition for self-awareness and reflection, it is necessary to create meaning, to find insight in ourselves and our values, in our surroundings and nature, in each other and society. In this way, video art fosters a basis for both empathy and ethics.
Second Video Series
This is the second time we dedicate a whole season to video art. In the dark half of 2018-19, the Nordic House hosted a similar series of ten exhibitions. They all inspired us to continue exploring this immaterial digital art form that enables us, in spite of the pandemic, to reach each other, and leave a smaller environmental footprint in the process.
The first series fostered linkages with new artists and new audiences, new dialogues between the building and art, and new encounters between different genres. And so the Nordic House decided to take on another ten exhibitions with some of the biggest video artists in the Nordic region.