Anja Lückenkemper in dialogue with Lise Wulff
Anja Lückenkemper: Did you always have a general interest in nature and ecology, and if so, what are the main areas of your interest – and does this interest inform your artistic practice?
Lise Wulff: It started out as a worry for the environmental issues, which again started to manifest itself in my artistic practice around 2007-2008. This was during an exhibition called Living Landscape, and I crocheted around some small stones in order to give them warmth and protection, which they would have needed if they were alive. My main area of interest is using the arts to engage, create awareness and hopefully inspire for reflection and change.
Anja Lückenkemper: What role do scientific research and science-based news play in your daily life and, if applicable, in your artistic thinking – either generally or for this project?
Lise Wulff: The news mainly works as a creator of worry, which again makes me feel like doing something. By “something” I mean both in my daily life, the small things we can do such as reduce food waste, eat more environmentally friendly, use public transport or co-driving, … In my artistic practice, it is about creating awareness and also talking about serious issues in a more creative and a different way, addressing the feelings, not using tables and numbers.
Anja Lückenkemper: How has the experience of a different landscape during your residency (or the installation period) shaped your awareness and interest?
Lise Wulff: I always find it interesting to experience new areas. In my case, the visit to the botanical garden was both a nice experience, but also a reminder of all we have to do to take better care of nature. The garden was really full of plastic, broken bottles, and garbage in general. This surprised me. In Norway, you will not see this in such a garden. But the project also led to cleaning of parts of the garden, which at least got some plastic out of nature.
Anja Lückenkemper: What are your very own unusual or alternative ways of relating to nature that might be informed by your artistic experiences and practice?
Lise Wulff: As I have the Woven Stone project, crocheting around stones, I also do that out in nature, as land art. I tend to be drawn towards suitable stones and a wish to do an installation – even when I am skiing or hiking.
Anja Lückenkemper: Our earth is in a continuous state of ecological crises: do you believe art can potentially play a role in “solving” our global issues, e.g. by expanding the dimensions of scientific research – or do you see the function/potential of art elsewhere?
Lise Wulff: I believe that art can create awareness and change in another way than research. To me, research brings the facts and issues, which also create awareness and hopefully change. But art can address this in a manner that engages in a different way. It also feels good to work with one’s hands, create something, do something – collaborative art projects that involve the audience is for me a way to contribute to the environmental challenges. Specifically, my world wide art project in collaboration with the Munch museum and United Nation Environment Programme – The Scream from Nature – has addressed many different issues and what we all can do.
The project “Blue Sun – Conversation on art, science, and ecology” benefits from a 93960 Euro grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants.
The EEA and Norway Grants represent the contribution of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway towards a green, competitive and inclusive Europe. There are two overall objectives: reduction of economic and social disparities in Europe, and to
strengthen bilateral relations between the donor countries and 15 EU countries in Central and Southern Europe and the Baltics. The three donor countries cooperate closely with the EU through the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA). The donors have provided €3.3 billion through consecutive grant schemes between 1994 and 2014. For the period 2014-2021, the EEA and Norway Grants amount to €2.8 billion. More details are available on: www.eeagrants.org and www.eeagrants.ro