Works in Progress
Kjersti Vetterstad: Fjorden og Fjellet and Robin Everett: Mustarinda Association, Vaara-Kainuu Art National Park

Please join us for a talk on two artistic projects that are currently developing and that act in different ways as environmental resistance through educational and artistic means. Artist Robin Everett will present Mustarinda Association’s ongoing project to establish the Vaara-Kainuu Art National Park in Northern Finland and artist and filmmaker Kjersti Vetterstad will share an insight in the documentary film “Fjorden og Fjellet”, the resistance against the mining activities in Naustdal, a few hours north of Bergen.

Robin Everett: Mustarinda Association
Vaara-Kainuu Art National Park: Integrating place-bound eco-social and artistic work towards ecological reconstruction
Founded in 2010, the Mustarinda Association is a non-profit group of artists and researchers, whose goal is to promote the ecological rebuilding of society, the diversity of culture and nature, and the connection between art and science.

Mustarinda’s collective work is based on interdisciplinary research into questions of multispecies justice and the well-being of community. The Association brings together artists and researchers, activists, and professionals from other fields to work, discuss, experiment, and explore new organisational and knowledge-creation models, aiming towards ecological reconstruction and systemic change, i.e. cultural transition from the current system built on oil dependence and overconsumption to a post-fossil, eco-socially sustainable society. This work is done through an international residency program, exhibitions, workshops, events, publications and development projects.

During 2023, Mustarinda, together with other local actors, revitalised a plan to work for the creation of a new National Park located in the Vaara-Kainuu area. The project aims to integrate contemporary art with environmental education to conserve the Kainuu hill region and fenlands’ nationally significant areas of biodiversity as well as the distinctive cultural traditions unique to the area. The National Park project will integrate place-bound eco-social and community work intertwined with experimental artistic and research work, and critical pedagogy aimed at social equality and (bio)diversity.

The talk outlines the interdisciplinary work of Mustarinda and the agency of such organisations in affecting systemic change in ecological, social, cultural and political realms.

Kjersti Vetterstad: Fjorden og Fjellet
The documentary film “Fjorden og Fjellet” delves into the long-standing conflict over a controversial mining project in Naustdal municipality in Vestland county, a few hours north of Bergen, where Nordic Mining has been granted permission to open an open pit mine and extract the mineral rutile which is used as a white pigment and added to many products, from paint and toothpaste to plastics. As part of the granted process, Nordic Mining plans to dump large amounts of residual waste and chemicals in the Førdefjord. The film deals with the struggle between industrial development and the preservation of irreplaceable nature and local culture in the village of Vevring, which is particularly affected by the mining project. For the local population, this struggle is also about their survival as a society. Through the stories of those affected, from local people in Vevring to national environmental activists, the film provides a perspective on the complex issues of environmental conservation and economic interests, and highlights the personal and social consequences of commercial extraction. Central to the story is a young and committed environmental activist from Vevring, who has lived his whole life with the uncertainty the conflict has created.
The film is currently being developed by Kristin Astrup Aas and Kjersti Vetterstad.

Kjersti Vetterstad (b.1977) is a visual artist and studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bergen and Konstfack in Stockholm. She explores themes such as place, time and impermanence, identity, ecology and the human’s place in the cycle, with works made as performances, installations, sound, video and film. The works are often developed in collaboration with other artists and performers from the performing arts field.

Vetterstad has recently shown at, among others, MNAC – Museum of Contemporary Art in Bucharest, Haugar Art Museum in Tønsberg, Tromsø Kunstforening, Galeria Bastion 3, Timișoara, International Filmmaker Festival of New York and Taxispalais Kunsthalle Tirol in Innsbruck. She has had solo exhibitions at, among others, Knipsu and Entrée in Bergen, and Tidens Krav and Podium in Oslo.

Foto: Hanna Kaisa Vainio


19:00 Introduction
19:15 Robin Everett: Mustarinda Association, Vaara-Kainuu Art National Park
20:00 Kjersti Vetterstad: Fjorden og Fjellet
20:45 Discussion
21:00 Finish