… for Residency at FISKARS

(apologies for the odd formatting, I couldn’t get it under control as yet)

I would like to create several projects in a similar line with Dungbeetle and Sisyphus, 






and the project: Journey with Virgil (aka: The Forest of Ladders)

Storytelling, narrative art works are important to me.I plan to interview (english-speaking) Finns. The interviews will investigate how people remember Finnish mythology and Folk Stories and how they understand their meanings. A primary reason for interviewing will be to connect with local people more than gathering the stories, as I can prepare some basic knowledge about Finnish Folk Stories and mythology through library resources & the interweb to gain a greater perspective and base to work from.The ways that we can read stories are not always only the obvious ones. So in the interviews I will be interested in hearing other people’s interpretations and how they relate the stories to their lives and what importance they still see in Mythology and general tales. 

For Dungbeetle and Sisyphus I played with the idea of a male greek protagonist, punished by the gods and contrasted this with the joyful existence of a Dungbeetle.

I can’t promise that I will create an equally wonderful project at Fiskars but I will try to make something memorable.

My process involves the appreciation for reflection, sitting with cups of hot chocolate or coffee, looking out of windows. I believe the winter time in Fiskars would be wonderful timing to find my inspiration in an environment that will be reduced from it’s summertime presence. 
I have begun to look up Finish Mythology and am fascinated with the overlaps between Dante’s Divine Comedy, Orpheus and the Finnish Kalevala. The notion of tricking or bargaining with the guards of the afterlife to permit journeying to the realm of where no life should be in order to gain understanding or retrieve an answer to an essential question; or to requiring guidance to regain one’s life’s meaning.   

Below is an example of a project which didn’t fully develop beyond the image that I made but which is another example of some of my ideas floating in my mind. Can you imagine this character to appear in an etching, on the pages of a large handmade book? Can you imagine this character put into different context by using photoshop to combine other art project elements, possibly placing this cushioned, protected character within a forest of ladders (not my plan but an easy illustration), turned into gray scale, turned into a photo etching plate, turned into an etching turning into a page in a book that followed a narrative that I create, a narrative that could be disorientating the reader who seeks for a date that this could really have taken place.. 










Integrating modern performances, modern installations and expressions of art in a narrative that looks timeless and questions our perceived place in a superior ‘now’ with a nudge towards a more humble reception of our present day superiority over the distant past. A nudge towards reading images and stories from the past with a mind that might be open to see messages and content that applies, that are shared with present day questions and themes.


After completing Journey with Virgil (aka: Forest of Ladders) in India I was asked to create and develop an indoor forest of ladders, evoking a similar feeling during the Liverpool Biennial in 2008.


I would like to ask if I may please bring my (glass maker) partner as my project assistant, he is very helpful and will support me 100%. This would help me greatly when I am planning to build something or when I find materials that require carrying. I have a hip injury, which doesn’t interfere with my normal day to day life but at the moment at least makes it burdensome to carry my medium format camera, tripod and various other equipment around. Furthermore I think he would love to meet the glass makers at the glass studio as he himself is a professional glass maker AND if it is possible for him to rent time at the studio then I could ask him to make me some oversized nuts to include in an installation or performance photograph. This picture shows two of his glass acorns, which he made recently and some pomegranate seeds in the background. (… just to give you an idea of how helpful he could be to me).

My immediate plans are to create several projects, which I will photograph and possibly film. The films may remain documents of my performances / interventions, or might become Art projects in themselves, similar to this section of Dungbeetle and Sisyphus, which I edited for the BBC big screen in Liverpool
//player.vimeo.com/video/2852551 Dungbeetle and Sisyphus 9 from Birgit Deubner on Vimeo.

I am planning to eventually create a thin book of photo etching prints of performance stills in such a way that the resulting prints are reminiscent of age old book prints. With this I intend to play with the boundaries between ancient storytelling and new interpretations. And also allude to the timeless nature of Mythological tales, which can sometimes retain relevance in the contemporary context. Creating a set of prints that invite a playful investigation, appealing to an Art Scene audience as well as any casual viewer. It is important to me that my work invites the audience with few barriers. 

I previously sold an etching print that I made with this idea in mind. I intend to use photoshop to combine several elements from different performances or installations together (I already did this once successfully but sadly do not have the image file on hand to demonstrate the composite image.) {you can see the simple version of the photo etching idea held up by my helper here: https://www.etsy.com/transaction/147492750 – apologies, this is a terrible photograph} 


During my time in Fiskars I may only create a few low key performances and hopefully installations and from this create some photographs for exhibition as well as some film documents.  
I would certainly keep the team at Fiskars up to date with how I am getting on with the book plans.
What the time at Fiskars would mean to me:

I have had too much time out of actively making public Art work (for a number of Art reasons as well as personal ones). However the bottom line conclusion that I arrived at in this time was that having an opportunity to return to the conversation with other Artists in the context of being an Artist in Residence would re-establish me in my career. Now that I had this time away from the public eye I feel better grounded and better equipped to offer my work and my ideas with affirmative confidence.You will notice a gap in my CV from 2011, which was prompted by having completed the majority of my MFA studies, being concentrated on my dissertation and being financially exhausted.

I had just been selected as one of the 40 top artists to watch in the UK, nominated for the Catlin Art prize (which I did not win) and had my work in the Benaki Museum in Athens. (please follow the highlighted link just before to see the nomination). However I needed time to re-evaluate my practice and approach. So I took time out, which took a little longer than planned. But now I feel is the right time to return to my Art career in the public eye. (I had been making drawings to commission in the meantime, but I don’t consider these part of my public Art career.) At Fiskars I hope to find an environment where many will be willing to share hot chocolate and interested to talk about their Art works, Craft making and thinking. I am hoping to find more than a place of passing but instead an ongoing connection to keep in touch with. A friend once told me that we can’t wait for opportunities but must create them.

I would love to find a connecting point in Fiskars and enjoy those cinnamon rolls that Oskari Sundström told me he makes at the Cafe. Please let me know if I forgot to share some essential information. This happens to me sometimes.

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