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2019 by Freya Björg Olafson

 

website last updated Dec 2019

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LAND

part of the New Icelander series    

5m 11s    

Video | Audio | Performance: Freya Olafson

 

format available:

Beta, Mini DV, DVD (NTSC or PAL)

 

Completed in 2007

 

In my New Icelander series I draw parallels between the cross-cultural experiences of my 19th century ancestors and my own present-day identity. In the creation of this work I referenced the Icelandic River Saga, written by Manitoba genealogist Nelson Gerrard, chronicling the history of the settlement of New Iceland, north of Winnipeg, Manitoba. In the New Icelander series I manipulate both the visual images and stories within this “saga”; thereby interpreting history, figuratively resurrect my ancestors and in the process discovering and creating my own mythology.

 

*** notes on Land: My ancestor’s settled on a homestead called Nes along the Icelandic River in Manitoba. This land was an unmarked graveyard for approximately 80 Icelander’s who died of smallpox within the first years of settlement: 1875-76. Upon visiting this site for the first time this summer 2006, I was surprised to have direct encounters with unearthed graves and bones that were gradually being dragged to the basin of the river. The imagery in Land is as a result of this serendipitous connection with history resurfacing. 

 

Screening History:

2017   Âjagemô gallery - Canada Council for the Arts - exhibition 'Thunderstruck: Physical       

Landscapes' curated by Jenn Goodwin - Ottawa, Ontario

 

2017   Fédération Culturelle Canadienne-Française 40th Anniversary Gala - Winnipeg, Manitoba

 

2010   ContainR “Land” - screened during the Olympics (Vancouver, Canada)

2010   Nordic Arts Alliance / Minnesota State University (Fargo / NorthDakota, Moorehead / Minnesota)

 

2010   OFFTA (Montreal) 

 

2010  Winnipeg Art Gallery ' Subconscious City' curated by Shawna Dempsey & Lorri Millan (Wpg, Mb)

 

2009   Scandinavian Hjemkomst Festival (Fargo / NorthDakota, Moorehead / Minnesota)

2008   Akureyrarvaka (Akureyri, Iceland)

2008   Drake Hotel as part of “A Taste of Iceland” (Toronto, Ontario)

 

2008   D:MIC, Dance: Made in Canada Biennial at the Betty Oliphant Theater (Toronto, Ontario)

 

2007   O.K. Centrum | Transart Institute  (Linz, Austria)

 

2007   núna (now) Festival (Winnipeg, Manitoba)

 

Contact Freya for the password to view the work online

Distributed by:  VIDEO POOL MEDIA ARTS CENTER

 

The development of this series is generously supported by the Manitoba Arts Council, The Winnipeg Arts Council and Video Pool Media Arts Center.