Explore - Connect - Develop This publication present the main fields of ARNA's work during the ten years when we have explored the culture dimension of sustainability. Together with glimpses from ARNA-projects we present a collection of reflections, written by artists that taken part in ARNA's artist in residencies. The artists describe different ways of how to connect to our living planet through exploring a place, its nature, history and people. Their experiences continued to make imprint in their practicies many years after. By that the texts also describe how artists transform their personal experiences into public work. As pathfinders.
Explore the interaction between humans and nature
Drawing by Nunzio Paci www.nunziopaci.it
Print by C. Matthew Luther www.matthewluther.com
Mixed media - Night Beat Owl
Aware of birds Birds. I am aware of birds. I watch them eat at the birdfeeder. I keep track of which species visit. And I listen to their songs, especially when they fly overhead. I’m lucky to have a pond next door, so in the spring and fall, waterfowl visit. Grey herons have a very low ascent, so sometimes they fly right past my windows on their way up, up, up. Canada geese are always funny, like a comedy group bantering backstage. Ducks pair up for life. Hummingbirds are feathered batteries. Did you know crows have funerals when one of their group dies? I picked up a dead bluejay and gave it a burial. I watched its mate in the tree wondering what happened. I wonder
if it was glad I cared. When a bird flies over my car, I say “hello.” When swallows group to dance their evening dance, it’s like they’re painting with charcoal on the sky. When the hawks and turkey vultures circle, I feel like they’re inviting me to heaven. I sometimes draw birds. I scour the internet for pictures of birds that don’t live by me. Or birds that are the same, but different the other side of the mountains. Once I felt like a carved bird at the top of a totem pole told me to remember to look up. That’s where the birds live: in the amniotic space between earth and outer space.
Deborah Bouchette www.dbouchette.com
Explore the connections between place, people and universal stories
Collage with some of the many works created by the artists Ji-ii Choi, Marianne Pon-Layus and Nettie Edwards during the project Home is where I am
Erik Bogaerts - photo from The Avian Kingdom
Free as a bird, exploring life There are many thoughts that go through my mind when I think of Harlösa, many related to me and a saxophone or the music that resides in my head, a way of perceiving myself as an artist? or a craftsman... surely an enjoyer in life! A wonderer on the lookout for passion and beauty, mostly self occupied but within a healthy balance that is needed by sharing experience with others as a teacher, a player or a listener. I found more passion and beauty then I could grasp in this majestic town, most overwhelming and to this day I miss being there (and I am not a person who usually ‘misses’ anything). I felt free in that time, space and surrounding. Free as a bird (ooh, If I could only know how a bird feels) for the first time in my life and I only realized it when I wasn’t there anymore... On my own in
a country I didn’t explore yet, but within the safety of these people who found joy in weaving dreams for others, they smiled when others were shining and for me that is what I hold most dear, I realized that it’s not about me, my art, music or anything like that. It is the true feeling of joy when we share with others. Feeling truly welcome in someone’s home… Those memories stay with me like a bright treasure in my pocket. I can take it out whenever I need to and it makes me smile, even now while I’m writing these words… I’ve recorded many albums ever since and they all included songs that carrie the names of the people and creatures I’ve encountered in Harlösa. One day, I will return again and again and maybe even again!
Erik Bogaerts erikbogaerts.com
Develop and share through music, poems, videos and workshops
photo: Jamie Oshima
Exploring Swedish folk music Over the last few years, I have been working with deep focus in the realm of Swedish folk music, creating a fusion of different roots music styles, thanks in great part to ARNA. My residency in 2017 not only allowed me a place to work and compose, but provided me with an opportunity to connect with Mats Edén, and travel around Sweden to some of the most popular and exciting spelmanstämmor of the summer. I met several of my favorite collaborators during the weeks after the ARNA residency, including Samuel Lundh, Ida Meidell Blylod, and Simon Nyberg. While at ARNA, I experienced the joys of collaborating with strangers (my fellow ARNA
residents), developed techniques for working on composition in nature, and loved getting to know the fields, trees, lakes, and birds of Skåne. During the summer of 2019, I traveled to Sweden yet again to tour and record with these phenomenal musicians. The music we created will be on an album that will be released soon, and is directly related to my work at ARNA. I am currently finishing a masters degree in music composition at University of Michigan, and am excited to continue forward with my career in the world of music and art.
Noah Fishman http://www.noahfishmanmusic https://www.youtube.com/watch? https://noahfishman.bandcamp.
Land art piece - Broken Kilometer
Art supporting biodiversity My residency at ARNA has had a powerful impact on both my career and the trajectory of my work and I owe much of that to the ability to explore, connect and develop a project that lasted well past the actual timeframe of my residency. The few weeks that I spent at ARNA were fruitful in the development of relationships that still endure today and have had a strong resonance in my work. Early in the residency Kerstin Jakobsson took me on a tour of the landscape in the local area and explained the natural history, the geology, hydrology, and the cultural landscape. This allowed me to see and understand the landscape through a variety of lenses and prompted me to explore the landscape through connections that would not otherwise have been possible. The introduction by Kerstin and further exploration and thought about the landscape encouraged me to ponder the potential of teaming with the Swedish Fortifications Agency, Project Sand-Life, and ARNA to produce a meaningful land intervention that would connect these disparate entities and develop a project that could act as a cultural artifact while simultaneously increasing the
biodiversity in the area through the thoughtful disruption of the ecosystem. The residency changed the way in which I thought about landscape maintenance and allowed me to considered disruptive ecologies as a means of diversifying the complexity of species in the landscape using unorthodox methods of main-tenance that include the disruption of soil surfaces through military maneuvers, grazing domestic animals, and burning. The results of that thought and the relationships that I built during the residency resulted in the land art piece Broken Kilometer. This earthwork, which is the width of a Swedish tank and a total of a kilometer in length, acts simultaneously as a piece of art and a catalyst for increased biodiversity. The piece is also temporal and will continue to dissipate over time as the exposed soil becomes occupied with fresh herbaceous material. Over a period of time, the piece will disappear and will only exist as a trace of the original act of manipulating the land.
Kevin Benham www.kevinjonbenham.com
Still from video art Svampar
International collaborations Our participation in the ARNA program began in 2012 and continues to be a rich and cooperative relationship that is not only professional but also personal. ARNA has acted as a force to stimulate and encourage our exploration of the world around us and this has acted as a catalyst to create conversations between individuals, organisations and communities. We have found that everything is linked and pathways open up for the curious. ARNA has allowed us to expand our experiences as artist and biologist. In many ways it has sharpened our focus on ecology and the environment. As an artist it has created wonderful opportunities to develop and exhibit new work in amazing locations and also collaborate with people such as the Swedish composer Mats Edén. As a biologist it has provided time to intimately experience
new and different ecosystems around the world. Our relationship with ARNA has inspired us to undertake other residencies that focus on art and nature, art and ecology, art and science in Norway, Florida and Oregon USA, Ireland and Australia. Collaboration with ARNA has led to exhibitions, community projects and public engagements such as: • Birds Upside Down in Harlösa in Sweden and in the Noosa Biosphere Reserve in Australia 2017. • The ARNA commissioned project ‘Art, Ecology & Science’ drawing links between a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology in the USA with a future biosphere reserve in Swedish Vombsjösänkan in 2018. • Presentation at the Matsalu Nature Film Festival in Estonia 2019.
Anna Glynn artist and Peter Dalmazzo biologist www.annaglynn.com
Develop methods for children to connect to nature
Sculpture - Observatory of the Self 7.1
Closer to nature, and to myself When I was part of the residency at ARNA in 2013 we followed a pilgrim trail for 14 days across SkĂĽne, passing through the Avian Kingdom. I experienced that the walking through the landscape brought me so much connection with my inner spirit, I felt so alive. I was able to contemplate on my life supported by the beauty of the surroundings. This experience brought me much
closer to nature, and to myself. On top of this I felt a huge welcome from the locals and the ARNA organisation. When I think back to that period of time I feel so much warmth. This warmth and liveliness became a reference for which I still use when I want to feel comfort and love. It became a part in me that still influence my daily life and my art.
Share experiences through public presentations
A shift in creative practice During the summer of 2015, I spent a month at ARNA. The theme of Tree, Sky, Stone, Stream guided my creative interpretations of the Avian Kingdom, the landscape and the history of the land, in and around Harlรถsa. At ARNA, I composed original songs in response to exploring the landscape on foot and bicycle. The project had several outcomes: a performance in a local church near Harlรถsa, a music album, inclusion on music platforms such as Spotify and Soundcloud, and songs from ARNA being included in an original play, Carcinogens (2019, written by David Samuel Grandouiller), performed at Ohio State University Theatre (USA). My time at ARNA was filled with new adventures and explorations into songwriting. Professionally, I consider myself more of a visual artist, with university degrees in painting and drawing and a record of international and national exhibitions. However, the program at ARNA allowed for a very flexible approach to creativity. The
welcoming sense of community that I felt at ARNA inspired collaborations, new directions, and offered valuable time to devote to any form of expression I saw fit to explore while there. It is hard to place a value on time spent in this manner, in such a place as ARNA. Personally, it was a pivotal experience for my creative practice. The experience encouraged me to consider sharing my work through a more collaborative process than I had previously attempted. Today, I am living in Nacogdoches, Texas (USA) and teaching Art at Stephen F. Austin State University. I still continue to write and release music projects. Mostly I have directed my attention to drawing and am currently working on a series of abstract, architectural drawings. I am grateful to the program at ARNA for the opportunity to experience such a magical landscape, which has led directly, and indirectly, to most of the projects I have created since that summer of 2015.
ARNA - art & nature youtube channel The diversity of local stories and artists experiences side by side
Sculpture - Odlaren
People are the real focus When I became one of ARNA residents, I had been working on art projects non-stop ever since graduating university and my creative process was far from the calm and focus ARNA was able to offer. I arrived with dedication to an existing idea for artwork, however it soon became clear that it will not work for the project. I had to let go and create something new from local legends and stories offered by the community. Starting fresh resulted in creation of one of my most prized artworks â&#x20AC;&#x153;Odlarenâ&#x20AC;?. I have been practicing this approach ever since, not being afraid to step aside from projects to explore and start something new. Allowing myself to discover other
avenues and then pursuing the better path with persistence and dedication. Over a year ago at a difficult time in my life, these valuable lessons gave me the courage to take a break from creating physical objects and to focus on learning and exploration instead. Now that I have returned from this break, I feel confident to experiment more and to produce artwork without worrying about its place in art narratives of my own practice and to trust that it will reveal itself naturally. The experience of working with ARNA community strengthened my interest in public and immersive art, where at the end of the day, people are the real focus.
Meet and share - a sustainable development is all about people
ARNA Art & Nature Field Station UNESCO biosphere reserves are called learning sites for a sustainable development. They are places where theories are tested in real life through science as well as by communities. Through ten years of development ARNA has become a field station where we test how the culture dimension can support a sustainable future in a physical area. The three words "Explore, Connect and Develop" have become the core in our own work as an organisation as well as for the almost 100 artists that participated in our many projects and residencies. ARNA support an aim in our region in south of Sweden for a new UNESCO biosphere reserve. Our vision is for it to become the world's first to choose the culture dimension as its profile.
ÂŠ Production - ARNA 2019 Front page - Arnold HagstrĂśm Photo back page - Birgit Petri