busy port seen from a rooftop

Save the Date: Society as a Whole @ Kunsternes Hus, Oslo


ENSAYOS and The Wild Living Marine Resources Belong to Society as a Whole present SOCIETY AS A WHOLE: Friday & Saturday, September 12 & 13, 2020 at Myntgata 2 and Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo, Norway

SOCIETY AS A WHOLE: On Saturday, during a walk along the harbor of Oslo, we will swim, eat from the sea and have a performative reading at the Oslo City Hall. This will be followed by an ecopsychological workshop approaching emotions and common denials related to our environment. On Sunday we will present film and audio screenings and a workshop combining law and poetry with a focus on formulating better possible futures. The leaders of the workshop will be announced shortly.

The event is motivated the questions: Which common psychological images, relations and reactions do we have to the ocean, environmental degradation and climate change? How can we change our common, everyday denials and, consequently, ways of life? What role can art play? Can we formulate possible better futures by combining law-making and writing with poetic expressions?


The Wild Living Marine Resources Belong to Society as a Whole is a series of interdisciplinary events at Kunstnernes Hus, organized by Geir Tore Holm, Søssa Jørgensen and Randi Nygård, as part of Ensayo#4. The events have been named after section 2 of the Norwegian Marine Resources Act and will be based on the legal text, divided according to its wording. The words are starting points for walks, film screenings, lectures and discussions.

The project relates to the law not only with the usual legal definitions but also with a more poetic and fundamental approach. It examines different ideas about the environment and our role in nature, our management of natural resources, responsibilities, views on nature, language and values. It seeks to present alternative views and experiences. We need to better understand ourselves as integrated parts of both the natural cycles and societal structures and we need to see nature as part of society to find new and better ways of organizing our communities.

Derrida writes, in “The Animal That Therefore I Am”, that thinking about the animal, if there is such a possibility, must derive from poetry. So, if we want to see plants and animals as part of our society and democracy, and ourselves as part of nature, then it can not happen only with our rationality, but also in emotional, poetic and intuitive ways.

The project is supported by Fritt Ord and Arts Council Norway. This event wasorganized in collaboration with Sørfinnset skole/the nord land.

About the venues:

Kunstnernes Hus is an art institution in the center of Oslo. Established by artists in 1930 to show both Norwegian and international art, it has since then become the most important independent institution in Norway led by artists, specifically dedicated to contemporary art.

Myntgata 2 is a studio building run by the Municipality of Oslo. It also houses the Oslobiennalen, who generously lent their space for the seminar on 12.09.

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