Carl Michael von Hausswolff — Adoptations: TU EST L’AUTRE


In this show there are seven works by seven artists, including one anonymous. Six of the artists have no idea of that they’re a part of this – they don’t even know that I consider their works to be works of fine art. Five of the artists have passed away. The title “Tu est l’autre” stems from the famous line “Je est un autre”, stated in a letter written by Arthur Rimbaud in 1871. As I understand it, this quotation deals with Rimbaud’s view on his work – that his writings seems to come from somebody else … something else … and that he is just some tool used by this unknown parasitic existence. I have taken his line and extended it to address this “someone else” – someone like you, perhaps – or someone similar to these fantastic people that I have forced into the world of contemporary art! In any case I am more interested in bringing out the actual individual behind a certain type of activity then just sampling, transforming or ready-making someone else’s work, making it my piece without mentioning the original source. One might also say that the people that I have adopted for this show, conversely might be using me as a tool or a host for to enable them to show what they have been up to within their lives.

I have worked with some of these artists before. Friedrich Jürgenson’s pioneering EVP (electronic voice phenomena)- works are rather well know at this point as it has been exhibited in many places around the world after my initial retrospective of his work at Färgfabriken Center for Contemporary Art and Architecture in May 2000. His around 1000 recordings of voices from the “other side” now belongs to ZKM in Karlsruhe. The piece by Olga Erikssson was exhibited at Färgfabriken in the show Dada East in 2007, curated by Adrian Notz and it was also presented by him at Cabaret Voltaire in Zürich. The performance piece by Selmer Nilsen, filmed in 1971 by the Swedish filmmaker Staffan Lamm, was shown at Färfabriken Norr in Östersund as a part of the initiation show Teleport Färgfabirken curated by myself and Jan Åman 2008. The works by James B. Irwin and Wu Ping has never been shown before. The film stills by the Anonymous artist are also new and never before exhibited. As they have been included in a movie, someone in the audience might have seen them flicker by in a darkish cinema. I found these stills, from a 35 mm film-roll, in Göteborg, 1978. They were laying around in a projection booth in an abandoned porn cinema as if the projectionist decided to dump them there as a result of a somewhat dubious film being broken. I have of course manipulated the images to my own taste and they have also been altered by laying around on the cinema floor as well as having spent almost thirty years in my archive.

I would like to thank the following people and organizations:
Staffan Lamm, Thomas Nordanstad, NASA, Olle Enberg, Metro, Alina Serban and the city of Geneva.

Short bios:
Selmer Nielsen (1931 – 1991)

was a Norweigian spy for the KGB during the Cold War. He was arrested in 1967, after almost 20 years in service for the Soviet Union. He was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison. Nilsen spyed in the area of Bodö between 1956 – 1963, observing, amongst other items, the landings of an American surveillance plane, a Lockheed U-2, that landed many times at Bodö airport to re-fuel. These operations culminated with the U-2 Crisis of 1960, when one of the U-2 planes was forced down over Soviet Union on May 1, 1960. The disclosure shocked Norway, as well as its NATO allies, as the espionage had been carried out through the peak of the “cold war”. After spending time in prison he moved back to his childhood home Bakfjord, West Finnmark in the very north of Norway. The Swedish filmmaker Staffan Lamm made the documentary film Branden (Fire) trying to figure out more about Nilsens behaviour. The performance piece in this documentary shows that Nilsen was able to communicate more artistically than many others of his kind.

group show
Teleport Färgfabriken, Färgfabriken Norr, Östersund 2008
see also (in Norwegian):

James B. Irwin (1930 – 1991)

was an American pilot and astronaut. In 1971 he served as Lunar Module pilot for Apollo 15, the fourth human lunar landing; he was the eighth person to walk on the Moon and the first to drive a car there. Beyond his achievements as an astronaut with NASA, Irwin is perhaps most notable for his Christian work. He left NASA and retired from the Air Force with the rank of colonel in 1972 and founded the “High Flight Foundation”, as well as leading several expeditions to Mount Ararat, Turkey in search of the remains of Noah’s Ark. His expeditions failed to find any sign of the Ark. In 1982, he was injured during the descent and had to be transported down the mountain on a horse and then to the nearest hospital.

see also:

Wu Ping

is a Chinese woman who became a celebrity over her holding out in one of the most famous nail house incidents in China. Ms Wu’s house was in the middle of a construction site for a new shopping mall in Chongqing. She was the only one of 281 families in the area who rejected an offer of a new house or financial compensation to move from the site in 2004. Wu held on, with her husband, the Kung-Fu artist Yang Wu, refusing to leave her house and restaurant after the state told her to do so. On April 4 2007 the house in central Chongqing was destroyed and Wu and her family received a one million yuan settlement plus a new apartment. The story gained international attention and became an inspiration for other Chinese citizens to resist ukases of the Chinese government. This is, to my knowledge, the first time that her action is exhibited in a contemporary art exhibition.

see also:

Olga Eriksson (1904-1980), Born in Hudiksvall, Sweden

1925 First and only child, Inga Elisabeth, born. Father is Oscar Sander, Östermalm, Stockholm
1927 Performs her first and, presumably, only art work “Mother Threw Herself In Front Of The Train To Save Her 2 Years Old Child”.
1932 Marries Artur Enberg
1945-1946 Moves from Bollnäs, Sweden, to Norrköping, Sweden, because of her husbands promotion from train assistant to train driver.
1946 Raises Olle Alvar as her second child.
1952 Almost dies from ileus.
1950-69 Works as a private abortionist and as an assistant slaughter.
1977 Moves back to Hudiksvall where Artur dies.
1980 Dies at Valla Hospital in Linköping, Sweden, leaving one child and three grandchildren.

group show:
Dada East, Färgfabriken Center for Contemporary Art and Architecture, Stockholm 2007

Friedrich Jürgenson (1903-1987)

Painter, singer/musician, documentary filmmaker and EVP researcher who lived in Ukraine, Estonia, Palestine, Italy and Sweden. Painted motives from Pompeii as well as portraits of Pope Pius XII and Pope Paul VI commissioned by the Vatican. His films has been shown by the Swedish National Television. In 1958 he was the first person to be able to communicate with “the other side” using electronic equipment.

Modules Répondeur, Palais de Tokyo, Paris 2008
Portikus, Frankfurt am Main 2004
Färgfabriken, Stockholm 2000
various shows in Sweden 1965-1987
Pompeii, 1958

-group shows:
Ghost In The Machine, Kunstnerernas Hus, Olso 2008
Anachronism, Argos Centre for Art & Media, Brussels 2007
Strange Powers, Creative Time, York City 2006
Auflösung II (Rausch/en), NGBK, Berlin 2006
Tracer, retracer / Tracking the traces, Leonard & Bina Ellen Gallery, Montreal 2005
Phonorama, ZKM Karlsruhe 2004
.ipeg bild ton maschine, Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin 2004
2nd International Biennial for Contemporary Art, Göteborg 2003
Bring the Noise, Centre Genevois de Gravure Contemporaine, Geneva 2000

see also:


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Carl Michael von Hausswolff (1956-)

Artist, composer, writer and curator based in Stockholm, Sweden.

– selected recent solo shows:

Enter: Sonic Tank, Tou Scene, Stavanger, Norway 2009
CCA, Kitakyushu, Japan (with T. Nordanstad) 2008
Cabaret Voltaire/Bodensee, Switzerland (with Elgaland-Vargaland) 2008
Museo de la Ciudad, Santiago de Queretaro, Mexico 2007
Wanås, Sweden (with J. Håfström & J-P Fabra) 2007
Museum for Modern and Contemporary Art, Rijeka, Croatia 2006
Färgfabriken, Stockholm (with A Gordh) 2006
Beaconsfield, London 2005
OK Spektral, OK Centrum für Gegenwarte Kunst, Linz, Austria 2004
Chiangmai Contemporary Art Museum, Chiangmai, Thailand 2004
Portikus, Frankfurt am Main 2004
Brändström & Stene, Stockholm 2004

selected recent group shows:
Spectropia, Riga City Exhibition Hall, Riga 2008
Ars Telefonica, Bucharest 2008
Traces of Siamese Smile: Art + Faith + Politics + Love, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, Bangkok 2008
Ghost In The Machine, Kunstnerernas Hus, Olso 2008
Rainbow Audio Transformation, Extra City, Antwerp 2008
Trans(ient) City, Urban Landmarks, Luxembourg 2007
2nd Moscow Biennial, Art Center Winzavod, Moscow 2007
Sound/Bytes, Edith Russ Haus, Oldenburg, Germany 2007
Prophets of Deceit, CCA Wattis Inst. For Contemporary Arts, San Francisco 2006
ARS 06, Kiasma, Helsinki 2006