8 PERSPECTIVES ON SEAFARING
Gabriel N. Gee, David Jacques, Dorota Lukianska, Annika Lundgren, Anna Liljedal, Stefan Meier, Kristina Müntzing, Cora Piantoni
Exhibition opening: November 19, 2021, 5 – 8 pm
Artist talk: November 20, 2 pm
public discussion PORT! CITY! INHABITANTS! STRIKE!
on November 20, 2021, 3:30 pm
Exhibition: November 20 – December 19, 2021
Monday-Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday-Sunday 10am-6pm
City Library Gallery Gothenburg
Götaplatsen 3, 40229 Göteborg
The Length of a Dot is one Unit is an exhibition about seafaring and storytelling featuring audio installations, films, objects, paintings and photographs. The exhibition title refers to the morse code, a common form of communication in seafaring.
The exhibition showcases artistic processes that investigate the city’s maritime heritage and present, at the crossroads of local and
global histories and identities . The artists work with objects and documents from different archives, as well as their own collections, with drawings, photographs and texts. The exhibition puts the emphasis on the artists’ creative processes, as they engage with seafaring on both the visible surface of seawater and the hidden layers below this surface. The library offers an ideal location to reflect on sources of information and knowledge, on artistic materials and ideas, on the visible and invisible patterns that structure aesthetic thought, in parallel to what lies beneath the surface of the seas.
Gabriel N. Gee‘s Souvenirs from Guangzhou explores through sounds and narration the past and present imaginaries of global trade, taking as a starting point the maritime silk roads of the early modern age and the history and legacies of the Swedish East India Company.
David Jacques‘ film Drill Ship walkthrough is loosely based on the 2012 wreck of Shell Oil Company’s Drill Ship ‘Kulluk’ amidst extreme weather in the Arctic Sea. The narrative as told by the voice of a Ship’s Radio Operator, seeps through the airwaves and critiques the hubris of oil entrepreneurs in a time of climate crisis.
Anna Liljedal’s installation Underströmmar (charm/strange) shows a series of inverted photographs of water colour paintings mounted on plywood. The paintings are modelled from photographs taken in the ocean outside the west coast of Sweden depicting underwater dimensions of the ocean.
Dorota Lukianska Dorota Lukianska’s practice is collecting stories and material and working in installation form. For six years, the collage work Desire to do good while it can always get worse, has expanded with new participants and perspectives until it finally ends its odyssey in Gothenburg.
Annika Lundgren‘s Sailors are Readers is an inquiry into the significance of the distribution of literature to Swedish merchant ship crews. Originating from initiatives from the church and the workers unions, the mobile ship libraries were considered a tool for increasing literacy, education and self-betterment among the sailors who should turn out to be more avid readers than expected.
Stefan Meier‘s Slow freight contains four hand-carved hardwood turtles which were sent, one by one from Zurich to Gothenburg City Library, where they are exhibited; They made the journey by being passed on from person to person, who were asked to record their shared time in the logbook. It explores unsecured navigation through a well-known space.
Kristina Müntzing investigates the seafaring theme through the history of construction of theatre scenery. The Drottningholm theatre, a world cultural heritage from the 16th century, has been constructed by former sailors and shipbuilders, who used their skills and specific knowledge from the maritime world to, quite literally in this case, transform the world of theatre.
Cora Piantoni is interested in political and historical situations and their impact on the life of individuals, on mutual help and solidarity. Her installation focuses on the changing working conditions at the port of Gothenburg and the ongoing protests of the dockworkers for their rights.