This letter to a dead spruce was written sitting on its trunk on 29 September 2020 in the forest near Mustarinda house in Paljakkavaara in north-eastern Finland. After reading and recording the letter I added it as a voiceover to the beginning of the video depicting the writing.
The work was realized during a Mustarinda residency as part of the project Meetings with Remarkable and Unremarkable Trees, supported by the Finnish Cultural Foundation. The name of the project alludes to the photography book Meetings with Remarkable Trees (1996) by Thomas Pakenham and the project is in some sense forming a counterpoint to it, by questioning what is remarkable and worthy of attention and what is unremarkable. The medium is not photography, however, but rather performance for video and recorded voice. Although we are often accused of not seeing the forest for the trees, I look at the opposite danger, not seeing the trees for the forest, and focus on individual trees.
Other works created in the same context are on display in the upper part of the gallery.
The project blog and archive on the RC-platform, give some examples and process documentations.
Dear Deceased, 2020
6 min 26 s
Filming, performance, text, voice, editing: Annette Arlander
Annette Kristina Arlander, born 1956 in Helsinki, where she lives and works. Artist, researcher and a pedagogue, one of the pioneers of Finnish performance art and a trailblazer of artistic research. Graduated from the department of directing at the Theatre Academy 1981, Doctor of Arts (Theatre and Drama) 1999. Professor of Performance Art and Theory at Theatre Academy 2001-2013. Professor of artistic research at University of the Arts Helsinki 2015-16. Professor in performance, art and theory at Stockholm University of the Arts 2018-2019. AVEK, Media Art Prize 2014, State Prize for Multidisciplinary art 2018.