How do we relate to land and how do we read it´s history and presence? Kirkenes/Girkonjárga is part of core Sápmi and is situated on Eastern Sámi, Sea Sami as well as Northern Sámi shared land, colonised by the Norwegian state for centuries. Today the young town is flirting with a new massive invasion of international capital forces of the world´s superpowers (China-Russia-USA), referring to the territory as “the Arctic”, geopolitically bygoing the ancient Sámi connection to the land. A flock of spirits, awakened by artist Máret Ánne Sara is the continuation of the Pile o´Sápmi project. The project investigates the concept of colonizing and of external domination – echoing the Sámi presence in spirit, history and present. The awakened spirits are also a personal manifestation by the artist, shadowing the Sara family´s extensive legal fight against the colonial state´s forced culling of their reindeer flock, threatening their traditional presence on their indigenous lands.
In collaboration with artist Elin Már Øyen Vister, a sound-portal, a spiritual (de)colonization is manifested in the town’s main pedestrian street, relating to the bullet ridden heads of Sara´s earlier works.
Foto: Jan Helmer Olsen.
The Fálá herd and the Sara family migrate through their traditional landscapes 240 km from Fála (Kvaløya-Hammefest/Kvalsund) to Bávttajohkka (Inner Fimmark). The migration happens twice a year, between the
summer, autumn, winter and spring pastures. Image is captured from the spring migration 2017 when the Sara family received news about the state appeal to supreme court, regarding the forced culling of their herd. After two court victories, Jovsset Ante Sara lost his case in the Norwegian Supreme Court. Sara has sent his case to the UN Commission on Human Rights, but the government has announced that they will not await UN. The reindeer herd is kept alive despite heavy threats about daily fines and forced culling.