Kunsthal Aarhus – DUMP!

  • Sarah Surgey
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  • 23rd August 2015
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    Nordophile is constantly searching for Nordic art centres/projects and festivals who work tirelessly to promote and showcase art, artists and their efforts to promote thought through their work. The collaborations that we have brought you all have a dedication to the art, fully. Sometimes unstructured, sometimes unrestrained but always fully committed. We encourage Nordophiles to combine their Nordic […]

    Nordophile is constantly searching for Nordic art centres/projects and festivals who work tirelessly to promote and showcase art, artists and their efforts to promote thought through their work. The collaborations that we have brought you all have a dedication to the art, fully. Sometimes unstructured, sometimes unrestrained but always fully committed. We encourage Nordophiles to combine their Nordic travels with some of these art exhibitions and festivals so you fully appreciate being in and part of the Nordics.

    Nordophile have come across Kunsthal Aarhus which is a contemporary art centre located at the heart of the city of Aarhus, Denmark: cutting edge art, landmark architecture, intimate atmosphere.


    Ny "løbebane"
    Ny “løbebane”


    The institution initiates, commissions, produces and presents art at an international level to local, regional, and international audiences. Kunsthal Aarhus creates art in a broad context, connected to other fields of human activity, other disciplines, and to a wider society as part of a sustainable approach.

    It provides a research-based participatory, collaborative and transdisciplinary platform for artistic experimentation and critical engagement. Kunsthal Aarhus strives to be an inclusive, transparent, dynamic and flexible institution that fosters the culture of appreciation and values diversity of contributions.


    Shaped Canvas Track

    Come and try Kunsthal Aarhus’ running track.

    Shaped Canvas Track is designed by the Dutch artist/designer duo Jeroen Bouweriks & Linda Beumer and was selected from a Call for Ideas in the summer of 2013. The selected project is inspired by the American minimalist icon Frank Stella and the Danish middle distance runner Wilson Kipketer, and in this way it combines art and sport.

    With its red rubber surface the track is perfect for a 50 metre sprint from the J.M. Mørks Gade street to Kunsthal Aarhus’ new entrance. The stripes of the track wrap around the old building becoming a hybrid between landscape architecture, sport, design and art.

    This fascinates City Architect from Aarhus Municipality, Stephen Willacy:
    “The selected team has created a very inspiring project. They have been able to create a temporary artwork, which guides the visitors with humour and clear design, but also respects the existing architecture.”

    The artists, Jeroen Bouweriks & Linda Beumer say:
    “We believe in the unexpected combination of disciplines, and that this can result in interesting dynamics. The idea of walking, running with a certain goal – in this case to the entrance – can become a game or a challenge. Why not facilitate this motion with an unusual track in a contemporary art context. It’s the mixture of these two worlds that can appeal to different kind of visitors.”

    Lars Nielsen, Chief Coach for the National Athletics team who has been a consultant on Shaped Canvas Track explains his interest in the project:
    “It combines sports and arts, and for me these are two elements with a lot in common. Both demand the same to get you to the top level, and that is commitment. You have to think in new ways, seek inspiration and make use of other people’s ideas.”

    The project marks the start of the new phase of the transformation of Kunsthal Aarhus, connecting the development of its new artistic profile with its architectural features:
”With this project we are rethinking the idea of the future art institution, and how to transform Kunsthal Aarhus into a more open and accessible institution that is connected to the wider world. Imagine if people will literally be able to run in and out of Kunsthal Aarhus and merge the experience of the art programme inside with the outside” – add Joasia Krysa, Artistic Director and Iben Hofstede, Administrative Director of Kunsthal Aarhus.

    Shaped Canvas Track can be experienced until 2017 and is the first commissioned art project in Kunsthal Aarhus’ new public programme “Museum Without Walls” (2015-2017) comprising of a series of new artworks developed specifically for urban context and participatory projects developed through social media.


    Current Exhibition

    DUMP! 26.June.2015-20 Sept.2015

    Collective Making series at Kunsthal Aarhus presents a new exhibition curated by Elaine Gan, Steven Lam and Sarah Lookofsky.

    DUMP! gathers together artists, scientists and organisms to explore multispecies collaboration that reshapes the ruins of modernity and resists industrialized progress. Contesting the celebratory logics of invention and making that dominate contemporary discourse, DUMP! creates an arena for waste, obsolescence, and decomposition, where practices of nurturing and collective cultivation may begin, turning composts to compositions.



    DUMP! upends the division between nature and culture, while refusing separations between art and science; the art institution and the natural history museum; and wonder and comprehension. By presenting creations of humans and nonhumans alike, DUMP! calls out for new ways of seeing, describing, making, and living in unruly entanglement within contaminated worlds.

    Inspired by Lucy Lippard, a self-described “compiler” of exhibitions, and taking its cue from garbage heaps – and the multispecies life that ferments and flourishes in them – the exhibition will continue to grow throughout its duration.

    The exhibition is sited in and between two locations: Kunsthal Aarhus and Søby Brunkulslejerne – a post-mining landscape of contamination, garbage, and unruly multispecies transformation. Both places will host projects, proposals, artifacts, and concepts compiled along two strands of overlapping inquiry that constitute the DNA and organizing principles of the show:



    Unmaking Making:
    There is a utopian and almost naive celebration of the creative maker in this era of crisis and extinction – a heroic figure invoked as alibi for economic recovery and sustainability by policymakers and governments. DUMP! proposes that the seduction of making, which also often goes unexamined in the field of art, dangerously reinforces a techno-positivist neoliberal logic of accumulation, which has accelerated the ruinous buildup that is threatening the very possibilities of collective life.


    Multispecies Collaboration:
    The ecological crisis facing the planet evokes an apocalypse that can be rationalized and mapped. DUMP! proposes that its key challenge is messy: nature and culture, humans and nonhumans can no longer be taken apart. Plants, fungi, animals, microbes challenge us to reconsider the unruly, rogue, invasive, and unspectacular compilers that hold things together, in effect playing across difference. DUMP! challenges the story of human domestication and mastery with murky, multispecies heaps.




    Aarhus University Research on the Anthropocene (AURA) and Kunsthal Aarhus host a weekend workshop with creative methods and experimental genres for living in contaminated landscapes, garbage dumps, and compost heaps of the Anthropocene. Led by Niels Bohr Professor Anna Tsing and Professor Nils Bubandt of Aarhus University, Department of Culture & Society, AURA research combines the arts, sciences, and humanities to ask: how might humans and nonhumans continue to inhabit a damaged planet? How might “we” collectively make and unmake livable relations?

    The workshop is organized in conjunction with an exhibition currently on view at Kunsthal Aarhus, curated by Elaine Gan (AURA), Steven Lam (Purchase College, NY), and Sarah Lookofsky (Museum of Modern Art, NY). Over a weekend, the workshop will gather seven different artists-scientists from the exhibition in a series of performances, tastings, presentations, and roundtables. A short story by Ursula K. Le Guin, The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction provides a rich conceptual framework. (Guests are invited to enjoy reading the short piece in advance.)


    elaine_gal (1)


    5 September, the workshop opens with a welcome at 10.30am, followed by a curatorial introduction to the exhibition. This will be followed by an AURA presentation on ongoing field research at the brown coal mining beds in Søby Brunkuslejerne. Around noon, Åsa Sonjasdotter (Sweden/Berlin) will lead a potato harvest and share insights on historical trajectories of potato varieties. In the afternoon, Cecilia Vicuña (Chile/NY) will talk about seed collecting and the beings of seeds in Chile and Denmark. This will be followed by Semiya 2015 town hall, an open celebration of seeds and stories. All guests are then invited to take a short break to eat Sonjasdotter’s potatoes harvested in the morning, along with some local beer brews. In late afternoon, Pawel Wojtasik (NY) will do a screening and open discussion on his experimental documentaries and works in progress.


    6 September, the workshop reconvenes at 13.00pm, with an open seminar by Etienne Turpin (Jakarta/Berlin) on postnatural histories. This will be followed by a short presentation by Amy Balkin, calling in from San Francisco, CA. At 15.00pm, roundtable discussion among all participants will be held. This roundtable will engage with Le Guin’s short story through three key themes: (a) the work of art and archives as carrier bags in a time of unprecedented environmental crises, (b) problems of scale and narrative, and (c) the representation of species temporalities and differential ontologies through various media (performance, poetry, film, writing). A tasting/cooking event by Spurs collective will be held in the early evening.




    Invitation to become involved

    Collect seeds in late summer
    Examine the particularities and origin of the seeds you find
    Contemplate and love the seeds, share your notes, drawings or photos of them

    Saturday, September 5th at 3 pm at Kunsthal Aarhus, citizens are encouraged to bring their seeds as contributions to a realization of “Semiya”, a 1971 work by the artist Cecilia Vicuña during her visit to Aarhus. Citizens (including scientists and artists) will observe, present and discuss the seeds. Dinner will be served.

    In 1971, Cecilia Vicuña proposed the work “Semiya” to Salvador Allende, the socialist Chilean president who died in the military coup that deposed him two years later. The proposal involved the collection of seeds throughout the country for a gathering and nationwide celebration of seeds. Allende smiled and said the country was not prepared, but perhaps would be by the year 2000. Since the work was never realized at the time, the artist is calling for participation for a realization of the work in 2015 in Denmark in conjunction with the exhibition DUMP! at Kunsthal Aarhus:

    “My idea is very simple: To encourage people to gather seeds as an act of love and contemplation. The collection may be performed during the late summer (August). On the 6th, we will join with and meet others who have been gathering seeds, to engage in a collective conversation. I will contribute with poetry readings and researchers will talk about the current situation of seeds in a global perspective, their loss of habitat and freedom due to the interference of transgenic crops that disturb or contaminate wild and native species. The event will feel like a town hall with people of all ages.




    Document your collection of seeds on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Flickr, Vine) and use the hashtag #semiya2015. All these seed posts, if they are assigned as public, will automatically gather on the website; https://tagboard.com/semiya2015/231493


    At Kunsthal Aarhus
    For the exhibition DUMP! at Kunsthal Aarhus, the artist created the work “Seed Quipu” containing both seeds, recently collected by the artist in Chile, and seeds collected in Aarhus. New seeds will join the installation following the event. Both “Seed Quipu” and the Danish enactment of “Semiya” are created in close collaboration the researchers Meredith Root-Bernstein and Marilena Campos of AURA (Aarhus University Research on The Anthropocene).




    About the artist:
    Cecilia Vicuña is a poet and multidisciplinary artist from Chile. Her work embodies the meeting point between art and poetry, text and textile, the body and the land. Her ritual performances/site specific installations bring together the oral traditions of the Andes, science and linguistics to meet the contemporary realities of ecological disaster. Vicuña’s art has been exhibited in New York at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Museum of Modern Art, at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Chile, and at the Institute of Contemporary Arts and the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London. Her most recent book is Spit Temple, 2013. Vicuña is a founding member of Artists for Democracy.

    Head to Kunsthalaarhus.dk for information on DUMP! and other exhibitions.

    Thank you to Kunsthal Aarhus for text and photos.


    Bora Bora

  • Sarah Surgey
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  • 11th August 2015
  • bora-bora-efteraar-2015

    Nordophile on its discovery of the arts in the Nordics is excited to present Bora Bora, a production house of dance and visual theatre. Based in Aarhus Denmark, this is definitely a cultural experience which any Nordophile can enjoy without fear of a language barrier, because the presentation is different to regular theatre and is […]

    Nordophile on its discovery of the arts in the Nordics is excited to present Bora Bora, a production house of dance and visual theatre. Based in Aarhus Denmark, this is definitely a cultural experience which any Nordophile can enjoy without fear of a language barrier, because the presentation is different to regular theatre and is not done solely through dialogue but a very visual exploration of performing arts, which makes it perfect for an international audience (like expatriates in Aarhus). Bora Bora is key in promoting international exchange, with encouraging and obtaining foreign acts to their stage as well as sending the performances they help co-produce out into the world – all the while trying to help emerging artists. Bora Bora presents, produces and co-produces national and international performances, organizes festivals, conducts artistic experiments and initiates residencies and workshops.




    Bora Bora as a house does not have its own dance company – as many other dance theaters have. They work with select groups, though, and co-produce their shows – among other things providing them much needed space to rehearse.

    They are involved with some international groups, but also have a handful of local groups connected. Among them the company Don*Gnu Physical Theatre – who will present their latest premiere “M.I.S. – All Night Long” this October. A good chance to see some uniquely Danish dance theater. Through exchanges with partners in different networks across Europe, Bora Bora wants to show the audience the newest and freshest in visual performing arts. They work together with partners to internationalise production possibilities for a wide range of artists locally and nationally. Facilitating contact between the Aarhus audience and European artists, and between the artists in general.




    Festivals are an important part of Bora Bora. Through festivals – like artist residencies –  the audience meets artists from different countries, exchange views, experiences and sometimes begin long-lasting cooperations.

    There are some amazing productions coming up which we recommend you see. Aarhus as a city is a cultural hub and is worth combining your Nordic travel with this theatre that is raw and impassioned about producing and promoting visual theatre.




    Sometimes words are not enough when it comes to the arts, so hereare some videos for you to hear & see a small glimpse into what Bora bora is really all about! vimeo.com  youtube.com


    Upcoming events


    Detour 16-17 Sept

    Detour is an urban dance festival with b-boying, house and hip hop poetry – dedicated to promoting and enhancing the quality of urban dance and its great choreographic potential in Denmark.

    The last three years the festival has been a great success in Copenhagen, where it has challenged both the audience and the Danish dance environment in their perception of urban dance and choreography. Now the festival comes to Aarhus for the first time.

    Detour festival is a celebration of the whole urban dance environment and is dedicated to further accelerate the meeting of urban dance and new audiences across cultures.

    The festival is for all ages, so come and join in when the year’s most extensive urban dance festival kicks off! Get carried away by the good mood when some of the best dancers on the urban dance take the stage. There is room for both clapping and cheering, be captivated and get up from the seats when the dancers interpret the classic hip hop in new ways that reach far beyond the stage.

    The festival includes short features from a mixture of the most renowned national and international choreographers on the urban dance scene.

    Featured artists on the programme:
    Tentical Tribe (CAN)
    CJM’s (FRA)
    Rico Coker (DK)
    Sara Jordan (DK)
    Anna Eileen & Marie Paldrup (DK)




    Reptile Youth 3rd Oct

    Mercedes-Benz presents a unique concert with Reptile Youth with stage design and visuals by the American artist Abby Portner.

    This cooperation was first presented at CPH:PIX and later at SPOT Festival. This evening you will experience a fully developed version of this collaboration between Reptile Youth and Abby Portner with a full live band set-up. The band will perform the songs from the EP “Away” plus older material. For the concert, Abby Portner is building an entirely unique stage design with video as well. For many years she has worked closely with Animal Collective as well as worked with John Cale and Jim Henson Studios.

    Bora Bora presents this concert in cooperation with Fonden Voxhall.




    Lost Memories 7-8 Oct

    Shaken, disoriented and without memory Mr. H arrives at a psychiatric emergency ward. The space, sounds and doors evoke glimpses of memories and the staff transforms into people from his past. Infinitely slowly he recalls: A woman is lost in the darkness.

    LOST MEMORIES recreates the feeling of inner chaos from a man who has lost his beloved to suicide, and the paralyzing despair that hits you when you see another human disintegrate. The performance shows in retrospect and in a backward manner the traumatic events which led to Mr. H’s amnesia.

    LOST MEMORIES is a tale of losing yourself when you lose someone else. About rediscovering yourselves and live in a moving narrative with dance, video, words and music.

    LOST MEMORIES is supported by the Danish Arts Council, Augustinus Fonden, Wilhelm Hansen Fonden, Denmark’ National Bank’s Anniversary Foundation of 1968, Konsul Georg og hustru Emma Jorcks fond and Copenhagen Performing Arts Committee.

    LOST MEMORIES on tour is supported by the Danish Arts Foundation Project Funding Committee for the Performing Arts.




    DON*GNU 29 Oct-3 Nov

    M.I.S. ALL NIGHT LONG is a slapstick dance performance which kicks the balls in orbit and bang the heads together in pursuit of the cursed self-understanding.

    In the final part of the trilogy about MEN SANDALS which is about the man’s identity in modern society DON*GNU digs down in the subconscious. Four totally different dancing men stretch themselves to the breaking point and throw themselves against their self-inflated walled-up self. They explore the man‘s unexpected paths and hidden energies in his labyrinthine search for meaning and pathos.

    What are these mechanisms we start when we as men look inward to find the answer? And how do we meet those mechanisms again, when we look outwards and are confronted with ourselves? How do we act in this inferno of unintended consequences with guilt and remorse at one end and desperate rescue operations in the other?

    Supported by Danish Arts Foundation, Aarhus Municipality, Aarhus Municipality’s Cultural Development Fund



    Bora Bora is supported by The Performing Arts Committee of the Danish Arts Council and The Municipality of Aarhus.

    We thank Lars Kjær Dideriksen who was only too happy to speak with us about Bora Bora

    Nordophiles should head to the site for the full programme with info and video trailers bora-bora.dk


    Aarhus Festival

  • Sarah Surgey
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  • 27th July 2015
  • Imagery-of-Perfection-credit-Line-Gry-Hørup

    Once a year, Aarhus Festival makes the city vibrant with life, energy and creativity. For 10 days in August/September every street and alley, club, stage, gallery and museum swarm with art and entertainment. Renowned traditions flourish side by side the new and unexpected. Aarhus Festival has been an annual event since 1965, showcasing local, national […]

    Once a year, Aarhus Festival makes the city vibrant with life, energy and creativity. For 10 days in August/September every street and alley, club, stage, gallery and museum swarm with art and entertainment. Renowned traditions flourish side by side the new and unexpected.

    Aarhus Festival has been an annual event since 1965, showcasing local, national and international artists. Through the years the Festival has been a great success and has grown into one of the largest cultural events in Scandinavia, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2014. From the beginning Aarhus Festival has been so lucky as to have HM Queen Margrethe ll as a patron, in 1965 as a crown princess and from 1970 as queen. Being the patron she officially opens the annual Festival.



    photo Martin Dam Kristensen


    Urban art, gastronomy and music

    Each year, the Festival has a new theme, serving as a frame for the more than 1000 different events. The events vary widely and cover all aspects of art and culture. Nowadays the main focus is urban space art and architecture, gastronomy and music events and concerts.

    A special event takes place during Aarhus Festival: the annual Food Festival, beautifully located by the seaside. Like Aarhus Festival, the Food Festival is a highly esteemed international event, gathering about 30.000 visitors and 250 participants each year. If you choose to visit, you can enjoy some of the finest and most innovative of Scandinavian cooking.



    photo Martin Dam Kristensen


    Unofficial opening – Down from the North

    Local singer/songwriter Tina Dickow will alongside musical acquaintances from both Iceland and Aarhus unofficially open Aarhus Festival 2015 with a grand show for 10.000 people. The show aims to bridge the gap between her current home Iceland and her birthplace Aarhus.

    Tina Dickow will invite artists from Iceland as well as local Aarhus-artists up on stage with her including Icelandic music’s hottest name right now, Ásgeir Trausti, and singer in the Danish group Folkeklubben, Kjartan Arngrim.

    The concert will showcase the best of both places according to Tina Dickow, who is delighted to share her view on Icelandic music with Aarhus in a great one-off show in beautiful surroundings.

    Aarhus Jazz Orchestra will team up with singer Michael Møller from the electropop trio The Mountains and do covers of indierock tracks arranged by Søren Møller as the supporting act before Tina and friends take the stage.


    photo Les Kaner

    5.30 p.m.: Entry to the concert grounds
    7.00 p.m.: Aarhus Jazz Orchestra feat. Michael Møller
    7.45 p.m.: Intermission
    8.30 p.m.: Tina Dickow with friends
    10.30 p.m.: End of show


    Featured artists

    Diane Spencer

    We are happy to bring back the always popular Diane Spencer and also welcome new appearance at Aarhus Festival Bec Hill as part of this year’s comedy program.

    This will be Diane Spencer’s third visit to Aarhus Festival, where she on previous occasions has entertained audience with her sophisticated language and somewhat dirty mouth, whereas it will be Bec Hill’s first appearance at the festival. Her creative style has led to several awards and great reviews. It’s intelligent and personal comedy at its best with two shows that in Denmark only will be performed at Aarhus Festival.

    Diane Spencer (UK): ‘Power Tool’
    Flight turbulence, celebrities and the quest for the perfect home are some of the key issues when the British comedian returns to Aarhus Festival. This time with her new show ‘Power Tool’, which is the sixth from the award-winning redhead. She is known for her storytelling abilities with which she combines dark humour and a sharp intellect as she entertains and shocks the audience.

    ”Her wacky and irreverent storytelling will charm, shock and uplift you” – Three Weeks


    Diane Spencer

    photo Steve Ullathorne



    This innovative and modern opera is the result of the collaboration between Danish trio Efterklang and composer Karsten Fundal. Circling around a future universe where humankind as we know, is has seized to exist, the music consists of 11 melodic songs reflecting the different personalities of the composers. These songs will be performed live in concert form with eight musicians and five singers including famous opera singer Lisbeth Balslev and modern percussionist Ying Hsueh-Chen.

    Doors open at 19.30.


    photo Bjørn Giesenbauer



    Five white rabbits are making The City Hall Park their home during Aarhus Festival. The up to seven-metre tall rabbits form the artwork ‘Intrude’

    Striking different poses and enjoying the surroundings in the park, the rabbits appeal to the playful inner child in the audience. Dressed as fairytale creatures they bring up memories from our childhood.

    Australian artist Amanda Parer created ‘Intrude’, which in line with this year’s theme ‘Light – more light’ will light up the park at night time.


    photo Ness Vanderburgh


    Global Concert

    Last year Aarhus Festival conducted the streaming experiment ‘Death Lines’ where artists placed around the world performed together via digital technology. ‘Imagery of Perfection – A Global Concert’ builds on those experiences and adds artistic depth to the format. In Aarhus, the audience will be guided through a dystopian setting by playwright Christian Lollike with performances by Danish act Efterklang, throat singer Tanya Tagaq, opera singer Bae Il Dong and flamenco singer Carmen Linares. Connected via the internet and shown on big screens in Aarhus acts from Japan, Italy, Australia and USA will take part in this digitally interactive performance.



    photo Line Gry


    We look forward to welcoming you at Aarhus Festival!

    At this moment, we are busy preparing lots of fascinating events for the 51st edition, with the theme ‘Light, more light – into the darkness, out in the light.’  This year the Festival takes place from August the 28th to September the 6th.



    photo Martin Dam Kristensen