Why did you leave? is part of Searching for the European Roller, a project in evolution since 2014. At Galleri 54 it takes form as a lecture performance, two maps, an artist book, a video and an installation with layers of splayed pages of an unbound book. Together these works trace the history of a specific species of bird and ask why did it leave?
- Long ago, the European Roller lived and reproduced freely in northern Europe. For unknown reasons, the species slowly went into steep decline and its last known nesting in Sweden dates from the summer of 1967. Recently, however, by breaking up the landscape and designing specific environments to attract amongst others this specific bird, scientists are attempting to reintegrate the species in Sweden. An in-depth study of cartography and of this bird’s migratory models has led Hillside Projects to analyse this desire to reintroduce a species, and to wonder why some species are more desirable than others, or have irrevocable legitimacy in a given territory. The history of the European Roller thus became a metaphorical starting point for a broader investigation into the notions of borders, limits and migration, as well as the notions of belonging, acceptance, and partiality.
- France Choinière, Dazibao, Montréal
Hillside Projects is an artistic collaboration made up of Emily Berry Mennerdahl and Jonas Böttern. Working in Stockholm, the two artists develop interdisciplinary projects whose focus is natural changes, which in their work become a metaphor for sensitive sociopolitical questions. Hillside Projects is particularly interested in the concept of knowledge and in authorities of this knowledge. They collaborate with thinkers and researchers in other fields in order to broaden the spectrum of their investigations. With a special interest in methods of storytelling, performative strategies and collaboration their projects manifest as lecture performances, drawing, text and video. Hillside Projects are members of the artist run gallery ID:I Galleri in Stockholm.
Why did you Leave? (a publication, 2018) is made with the generous support of Helge Ax:son Johnsons Stiftelse.
Again and again we ask these questions?(video, 2019) was made possible through the dedicated time and efforts of our collaborators Giorgos Chloros (cinematographer) and Jonas Holmer (editor, sound designer and musician).
FRIDAY 15 FEBRUARY
6–9 pm opening and book release for the publication Why did you leave?
7 pm lecture performance Searching for the European Roller (in English, ca 25 min)
SATURDAY 16 FEBRUARY
1 pm artist talk: Emily Berry Mennerdahl & Jonas Böttern in conversation with Mikael Olofsson