This year's installation of the Fotobookfestival Oslo at Arbeidersamfunnets plass comments on public space and asks;
Who is present in public space? What if instead of building a new and demolishing the old, we focused on seeing, knowing, reflecting on, and appreciating what we already have?
For the past couple of years, Fotobokfestival Oslo’s main event has taken place at Arbeidersamfunnetsplass in the blue containers, but this year’s edition focuses on photography as a practice of seeing, it proposes a different approach. Instead of adding another layer to the already problematic square, the temporary installation allows one to ‘see’, ‘reflect on’, and simply ‘be’ in the public space.
One of the inspirations and references for the events and installation at Arbeidersamfunnet plass are Viel Bjerkeset Andersen’s sculptures, Towards North (Mot nord), installed in 2009 when the square was renovated. Photos from around that time show the clarity of the square in a literal and architectural sense, as well as its functionality (you can see original photos from 2009 installed at the back of the container at the Arbeidersamfunnets plass).
As a response to the current situation at the square (too many commercial actors, and lack of place to sit) this year we created 'Capsules of Tranquility' (set up design by Rachel Dagnall &Thorbjørn Reuter Christiansen) in which you can try to hide from the noise and listen to Adrain Bugge talking about demolished YBlokka and Jordi Barreras commenting on the hidden ways of surveillance and labor conditions in the neoliberal society.