The Irish Creevagh group and Swedish Karum group, together with visitors from the Netherlands, visited the Skåne/Kivik area 16–22 September. There were a variety of site visits, internal seminars as well as public events with open presentations from the Netherlands, Ireland and Sweden to a local audience. Together we moved along the axis Copenhagen-Kivik-Kalmar-Öland and also experienced some interesting things along the road.
16 September, Copenhagen–Kivik via Kämpinge
The Creevagh group from Ireland was met by Bodil Petersson in Copenhagen airport and we travelled to Bärnstensmuseet (Eng: the Amber Museum) in Kämpinge, south-west of Malmö. The amber-themed museum owner, Leif Brost, gave us a fascinating and good-humoured tour of his extensive and quirky collection of amber, beach-combing and archaeological finds. The visit was directly connected with Patricia McKenna’s and the general group’s interest in amber. Here is a link to Bärnstensmuseet: www.brost.se and to a Swedish short film about the museum: https://youtu.be/aKcem-ydqhk
Later at Svabesholms Kungsgård in Kivik, south-eastern Skåne, we were greeted by historian
17 September, Kivik
Our first internal seminar with the whole group took place at Café Sågmöllan in Kivik, adjacent to a Bronze Age cairn. We were hosted by the Region Skåne culture board, as part of the international exchange during an Experimental Heritage seminar in Kivik, involving the Swedish Experimental heritage groups from Kivik and Öland, and with international guests from both Ireland and the Netherlands.
The internal seminar began with a talk by Bodil Petersson on the Swedish Experimental Heritage perspective followed by Maria Kerin from the Irish Experimental Heritage perspective. Echi Åberg presented her work on related to an “eel bench” and the eel as cultural heritage in the area of Kivik and Skåne. Elisabeth Malmström went on to tell us about her theme relating to the brook horse, a mythic creature in Skåne.
Later there were presentations by the Netherlands team on their work at the intersection of art and archaeology. Krien Clevis, artist/researcher PhD, curator, presented “
Rachel Sweeney introduced herself to the group and invited us to a silent reflective walk as we returned from the grave to the seminar. Rachel is a Senior Lecturer in Dance at Liverpool Hope University and has lectured widely in Performance Studies in the UK and Ireland. She is an interdisciplinary dance artist whose research seeks to expand interfaces between dance, sustainability and geological practices, highlighting the sensory, kinetic intelligence of the dancer through engaging ecological questions surrounding the relation of the dancing body to its environment.
The hostess of Café Sågmöllan in Kivik, Ann-Louise Svensson Ferngård, is an archaeologist and she gave us a special guided tour in and around the nearby the Kiviksgraven Bronze Age cairn. The bronze age mound hides a cist coved with petroglyphs – images which tell us about travel, both living and spiritual, rituals and ceremonies. Website of the Kivik grave: www.kiviksgraven.se. Elementary Wikipedia information on the Bronze Age cairn: The Kings Grave
In the evening there was a public meeting at Solevi, Kivik where Bodil and
Michael Walsh made a general slide presentation about The Burren region in Clare, Ireland and his project on documenting “wild bathtubs”. Eline Kersten presented her film “Solastalgia” examining the connection between environmental degradation and mental wellbeing, specifically in the context of a marl quarry in the Netherlands. The mesmerizing drone footage of the quarry was overlayed with audio interviews of local voices.
18 September, Kivik–Kalmar via Kristianopel
We headed north towards Kalmar, visiting a couple of sites along the road: Kristianopel on the Baltic coast, an old Danish-Swedish fortified border town from the 17th century. Further north, towards Öland, we visited two “round churches” along the coast south of Kalmar: Voxtorp and
In the evening we visited Kalmar Castle, one of Sweden’s best-preserved Renaissance castles. https://edition.cnn.com/travel/article/most-beautiful-castles-world/index.html
Thursday 19 September, Kalmar
Danny Burke, Ireland was the guest lecturer for the cultural heritage and archaeology students at Linnaeus University on the themes of Prehistoric Megalithic monuments of Ireland and their wider European contextand Inside a living Megalithic culture – Experiences from Meghalaya, Northeast India. Bodil Petterson hosts the lectures as part of the bachelor’s program Heritage in Present and Future Society.
The day continued with a Public Experimental Heritage seminar at Kalmar Art Museum on the topic of working at the intersection of art and archaeology. Hans Gurstad-Nilsson and Maria Kerin presented and showed the film “Moving the Ship”. Later, guest lecturer, Maria Kerin, Ireland, spoke about her practice of embodied movement: Listening to trace fossils within – A movement artist’s perspective on the intersection of art and archaeology in Experimental Heritage.
Déirdre Carr, in collaborating with Hans Gurstad-Nilsson presented their film “Land of Promise #1” exploring the landscapes of three world heritage sites Burren, Stora Alvaret and limestone Kotel of Jerusalem. Poetry by Déirdre was overlaid with a kind of “peace-war” narrative audio-video by Hans. Also, Öland artist Bodil Magnusson showed her film “Messages in the Wind” where she mixes her poetry, with lyric, music and film on the theme of the 5th-century massacre of women and children at Sandby Borg ringfort, Öland.
There were also presentations from the team of artists and archaeologists from the Netherlands about their experiences with work at the intersection of art and archaeology. Joep Vossebeld, artist/curator, participant of ‘OVERGANGSZONE’ performed a very entertaining and thought-provoking reading of his essay: An extended whisper, and questioned why do we always seem to want to interfere rather than to leave untouched.
Hanna Hesemans, MA, heritage studies, at the University of Maastricht, told us about her thesis on Transition Zone, examining the process of how a former limestone mining area in the vicinity of Maastricht could be transformed for recreation. Regarding redevelopment plans for the quarry, she examined the conflict/contradiction between art and business in practice.
Gilbert Soeters, Municipal Archaeologist of the City of Maastricht, presented his innovation program on spatial development, tourism and heritage protection in Maastricht. In particular, how to develop the extensive legacy of fortifications in the city, while taking into account the opinions of different stakeholders.
The afternoon at Kalmar Art Museum was co-arrangement between Kalmar Art Museum, Linnaeus University, and the projects Experimental Heritage, Swedish-Irish Explorationsand Experimental Heritage, Öland.
20 September, Öland, Norra Möckleby and Gråborg
Next, the Irish group moved to Norra Möckleby where we were very completely looked-after by the hostess Lotta Karlsson at her charming traditional Öland farmstead. The day was dedicated to internal discussions and workshops with Karum-Creevagh with the aim of further developing our group projects, transdisciplinary and trans-local cooperation and the practicalities of seeking funding for our work and how we can increase the understanding of the different traditions within archaeology and art, Irish and Swedish.
For a mid-day break, Anna-Karin Andersson brought us to the nearby Iron Age fortress of Gråborg, where she led us in a place-related workshop or embodied meditation and exploration.
21 September, Öland, Himmelsberga
The first half of the day was an internal seminar, followed by an opening of the exhibition and a public seminar at Lilla Hallen at Ölands Museum Himmelsberga. The exhibition of Karum-Creevagh and Öland works were on display for the end of September. The exhibition included artworks and photographs submitted by members of the group representing their collaboration in the overall project.
There were showings of short movie clips “Moving the Ship” (Hans Gurstad-Nilsson and Maria Kerin), “Messages in the Wind” (Bodil Magnusson), “Amber” (Hans Gurstad-Nilsson and Patricia McKenna), and “Land of Promise” (Hans Gurstad-Nilsson and Déirdre Carr). In additon there was a guest showing of “Eldmörja” (“Glowing ashes”) an art and music project by Patrick Arthursson and Roine Magnusson. www.eldmorja.com
In response to the first Öland version of “Moving the Ship”, the group made a response ritual movement that created a trace on the sandy river estuary at Lahinch beach. Hans added video of this into “Moving the Ship #2” overlaid with flute played by Danny Burke. Based on the interlocking pattern in the sand, Maria Kerin designed a pocket with a similar knitted pattern. Half of the pocket was made of hand-spun yarn from a combination of wool from both Öland and Clare. This knitted pocket was presented to Bodil Petersson who narrated the story of a mythical Viking ship that could be folded into a pocket when needed.
Here is a link to the locations on the schedule.