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Survival Kit Umeå is an international contemporary art festival exploring the theme of local and global survival. The month-long festival is filled with visual art, music, food and film as well as discussions, seminars and lectures by invited artists and activists. The festival runs in collaboration with Survival Kit 6 in Riga. This year, when the two cities are European Culture Capitals, there will be two parallel Survival Kit Festivals, first in Riga followed by Umeå.


The festival has it's central hub around Verkligheten Gallery on Pilgatan 16 and nearby, at Kungsgatan 92 as well as in the Trailer Gallery and Vita Kuben at the Norrlands Opera. It also utilizes less conventional art spaces, filling the older parts of the hospital and infiltrating town parks and leftover spaces in the city. As a finale, the festival takes the ferry to Finland under the artistic supervision of Maskinen Gallery, connecting the Survival Kit Festival with the Bothnia Biennal in Finland.

The Art!

Around 30 artworks made by international and local artists all have their starting point in the theme of survival. There is a great variety in techniques, aesthetics and conceptual ideas and the artworks range from installation and sculpture to video and performance. Some artworks are site-specific and built on location, others are finished works installed on-site in Umeå. Many of the artists will also be present in person during the festival!


How can we survive as human beings in a world less predictable and more complex than ever? The challenges the world faces can seem almost impossible to grasp and respond to. The Survival Kit Umeå Festival poses some of the big questions through art: how can we look at issues such ecology, economy and human survival at large? And on a more personal level: how can I navigate as an individual in this new and complex world?

It all started in Riga 2009 when the yearly Riga art festival ”Survival Kit” was initiated by Latvian Centre of Contemporary Art. We, the artists of Verkligheten, were immensely inspired. We wanted to create our own Survival Kit festival in 2014, an art festival discussing the big questions of global survival but also taking the more practical stand of trying to survive on a local and personal basis. We talked to the curator in Riga, Solvita Krese, and an intensive artistic exchange was started.

In September 2014, the year in wich Umeå and Riga are both European Culture Capitals, there will be two parallel Survival Kit Festivals in each city. The two festivals show different artists and highlight different questions. What connects them is the idea that you can change the world in important ways by initiating actions in your own neighborhood, since this neighborhood in turn is connected to the world. Another important idea that has guided us through the project is that collaboration is essential and that it enables us to reach much further than we would have on our own.

The Survival Kit Umeå Festival will open on September 20th this year – a varied, open, including, free-of-charge festival with artworks by more than 30 artists/artist groups. Through the potential of art, we hope that our visitors will challenge their perception and reflect on possible scenarios for the future; perhaps initiate new ways of thinking when it comes to individual and collective development.

The festival touches on topics of how we use (and misuse) the Earth and how we build a society together. At the same time it is a very hands-on experiment, exploring the food produced in our near region and converting Verkligheten’s parking lot into a collective garden.

The festival also includes musical performances, a seminar and a film festival. Artists, scientists, journalists, authors and activists are invited to speak on different topics that will broaden the discussion and deepen the survival kit theme.

Opening on the last weekend of Survival Kit in Umeå is the Bothnia Biennal in Finland. The city of Umeå is located by the northeastern coastline of Sweden and Umeå’s closest neighboring city is actually Vasa in Finland. The Maskinen Art Boat will function as a work of art in itself, a bridge on the move, geographically connecting Survival Kit Umeå with the Bothnia Biennal. The project is run by the Umeå-based Maskinen Gallery and will be realized October 17-19th - the last weekend of our festival. The ferry connecting Umeå and Vasa will during these days be transformed into a floating exhibition hall with artists selected by the "Machinists" from the Maskinen Gallery group.

Initiator of the Umeå Survival Kit-project is Verkligheten Gallery, run by twelve artists based in Umeå. Together with Bildmuseet, the Umeå Art Academy, Vita Kuben and LCCA(Riga) we have developed the project, working with workshops and exchanges along the way. At this last stage when the Survival Kit Umeå Festival will be realized, we are also collaborating with for example Maskinen Gallery, Trailer Gallery, Folkets Bio and Pilgatan Book Café.

Survival Kit Umeå starts on September 20th – see you then!

News & Program / Time & Space

Survival Kit Umeå from umea2014 on Vimeo.


Time & Space

Our venues are mostly found in two clusters:

1) Verkligheten – Pilgatan 16, Café Planet – Kungsgatan 101 and Kungsgatan 92
2) Parts of the old University Hospital – Building 9
Other places are the Trailer Gallery, Vänortsparken and Vita Kuben (inside Norrlandsoperan). Some artworks are mobile or appear att different spots at different dates. Lectures and Seminars are placed at the Flexhall in Bildmuseet, Café Planet at Kungsgatan 101 and Bokcafé Pilgatan.

Music is performed during the opening day, at a temporary scene between Verkligheten and Bokcafé Pilgatan and K101. During the other days of the festival, at Folkets Bio and Flexhallen at Bildmuseet.

The Days of Film, takes place October 10-12 at Folkets Bio.

General opening hours (for exhibitions) are Tuesday 3-8 pm (15.00-20.00), Wednesday-Sunday 12-5pm (12.00-17.00), Mondays closed. Vita Kuben in Norrlandsoperan: Mon-Fri 11am-1pm (11.00-13.00), Wed-Sat 5-9pm (17.00-21.00).

You’ll find all events at Umeå2014, our webpage/app and on Facebook. During the festival days, there will be an info-hub at the bottom floor in one of Verklighetens buildings at Pilgatan 16.

No entrance fees! Some events might be very popular so be sure to be there in time, or, as with lectures at the Bookcafé, seats can be reserved by contacting Bokcafé Pilgatan.


Provide us with your E-Mail and we will send you news updates.
We're also at: Umeå2014, Facebook och Twitter

Program - Ulla Thogersen

20 sep kl 11.00am Sjukhusparken
24 sep kl 11.00am Rådhusesplanaden
25 sepkl 11.00am Universitetsparken
26 sep kl 11.00am Verkligheten

Program - Matti Sumari

8 Oct 2.00-5.00pm Vänortsparken
12 Oct 12.00-3.00pm Vänortsparken
15 Oct 2.00-5.00pm Vänortsparken
18 Oct 12.00-3.00pm Vänortsparken
19 Oct 12.00-3.00pm Vänortsparken

Program - Lisa Busby

28 Sep 07.00-15.00 Nydalasjön
30 Sep 12.00-15.00 Under the Svingen-bridge
1 Oct 14.00-17.00 Gimonässkogen
3 Oct 12.00-15.00 The water turbine at Baggböle
4 Oct 12.00-15.00 Bildmuseet, Art Campus

Days of Film, Friday Oct 10

5.00-5.20pm Aquaporko!
5.20-5.56pm TheTower: A Songspiel
6.00-6.50pm Difficult Love
7.30-9.05pm Future my love
10pm Music: Jenny Wrangborg & Stationen

Days of Film, Saturday Oct 11

1.00pm Paths through Utopia
3.15pm Call me Kuchu
4.45-5.45pm Conversation with Naome Ruzindana, hbtq-activist from Rwanda
6.15-6.35pm Chernobyl Mon Amour
6.40-7.30pm Border Musical
8.00pm Folkbildningsterror

Days of Film, Sunday Oct 12

1.00pm Dreamland
3.00-3.40pm Vorratskammer
3.40-4.15pm Land of Freedom
4.15-4.50pm Hout Auto
6.00pm Evaporating Borders
8.00pm Fantastic planet


[V] Verkligheten, Pilgatan 16, [K92] Kungsgatan 92, [K101], Café Planet, Kungsgatan 101, [NUS] Byggnad 9, Universitetssjukhuset, [VK] Vita Kuben, Norrlandsoperan, [TG] Trailer Gallery, [VP] Vänortsparken, [M] Mobilt (utomhus), [BC] Bokcafé Pilgatan, [BM] Bildmuseet - Flexhallen, [FB] Folkets Bio

Friday September 12 The Glasshouse What is "Survival"? A pre-taste of the festival
12-3 pm Artist Lisa Busby - sound performance inside of the Glasshouse
12-3 pm Couches, fika, books, videoclips - get to know Survival Kit!
3-4.30 pm Speech in English: : Maria Del Mar Becerra – "Understanding our human path and envisioning a future"
4.30-5 pm Q&A with Maria
6.00-7 pm Film : Disruption - in English
7.00-7.30 pm Discussion
7.30-8.30 pm Film: Freedom Ahead - in English
8.30-9 pm Discussion
Friday September 19 BM - in Swedish & English 18.00–20.00 Artist presentations Saturday September 20 BC, V, K101, M 10-12 Breakfast lecture with Åsa Moberg - BC - in Swedish
11–4 A horsecart moves between our venues
12-5 Opening of the exhibition venues
12.00-12.05 Music - Mona Ersare - V - stage
12.05-12.15 Opening speeches - V - stage - in Swedish & English
12.20-12.45 Music - Mona Ersare continues - V- stage
12.45 Performance with Anthony Clair Wagner - V
1.00-4.00 Pantry talks - V - in English
2.00-2.30 Music - The Great Park - Kungsgatan 101/92
2.40–3.10 Music - Julia Hariz - Kungsgatan/Horse Trailer
3.00–4.00 Performance - Lisa Busby - Kungsgatan/Pilgatan
4.00-5.00 artist Lisa Busby performs - V - stage
7.00-7.15 Presentation - Survival Kit, Riga - K101 - in English
7.20–10.00 Concerts - K101
Julia Hariz, Umeå, The Great Park, Germany, Mona Ersare, Umeå, The Gravedigger and The Teacher, Umeå
10.00- Music and dance - DJ Bitsocker - K101
Sunday September 21 V, BM Harvest feast with the City Gardeners - V
11.00–12.30 am Artist presentations - BM
12.30–1.30 pm Lunch - BM
1.30-5.00 pm Presentations continue - BM
Saturday September 27 Taste of Transparency - Umeå Pantry shares food from the cooking workshop with Restauranghögskolan - V
Saturday October 4, kl 4.30-8pm K101 - in English Seminar - Food Matters - Food politics, biological diversity and taste driven economy, with among several: Pavlos Georgiadis, scientist, farmer and writer. Arne Lindström and Mats Granath, The Federation of Swedish Farmers in Västerbotten (LRF), Susanne Hjort, Human Geography. Morten Rasmussen, Nordic Genetic Resource Center. Moderator: Wapke Feenstra, Myvillages Thursday October 9, kl 2-9 pm BM - in English Seminar - What is to be done?
Humanity and the whole biosphere is faced with urgent questions – do we solve everything by a change of light-bulbs, sorting trashes and buying fair trade products, or should we rather rethink our place on this planet and drastically change our behaviour?
Moderator: – Karl Johan Bonnedahl, lektor vid Handelshögskolan, Umeå Universitet
14.00-14.10 Introduction by Alexander Svartvatten, Project Manager Survival Kit
14.10-14.45 Vandana Shiva, philosopher, activist [customized film speech for Survival Kit]
14.55-15.25 Niclas Kaiser, senior lecturer in Psychology, Umeå University
15.30-16.05 Régine Debatty, curator, critic & blogger
16.20-16.55 Pavlos Georgiadis, farmer, author, ethnobiologist
17.00-17.35 Lisa Gålmark, historian, critic, author
17.45-18.45 Dinnerbreak – free soup and bread – first come first served
18.50-19.30 Derrick Jensen, author, environmentalist [via Skype]
19.30-21.00 Discussion
Friday-Sunday, October 10-12 FB - in English & Swedish Filmdays - Films, talks, music. Among the featured films are much awarded : Dreamland, Future My Love and Evaporating Borders
Sat Oct 11, there is a talk after the film Call me Kuchu, with Naome Ruzindana, LGBTIG-aktivist from Rwanda
See separate schedule for more info
Friday October 10 V, FB - in Swedish or English 5-7 pm Workshop, mat på Azolla, med Erik Sjödin - V
10 pm Music: Jenny Wrangborg & Stationen - FB
Saturday October 11 – K101 1.00-3.00 pm A food market and workshops with local producers. Talks will be held about baking bread and cheese production. Oyster mushrooms are cooked and tunnbröd is being baked – Come and join us!
Some of the participating producers: Bodabackens Ekobruk, Kamrose, Barkbröd from Västerbotten, Swedfungi AB, Nyhems Handelsträdgård, Hagabröd, Hansen Charkuteri and Svedjan Ost.
Saturday October 11, kl 3-5 pm K101 - in Swedish or English Seminar: Biodomes
- Erik Sjödin, Konstnär
- Enrique Lescure, Earth Organisation for Sustainability
- Alexander R. Bascom, Biodome-projektet, Lögdeå
Sunday October 12 V - in Swedish & English 12.00-2.00 pm Workshop in how to cook Oyster mushrooms, Renyuan Huang Friday October 17( - 19) 17-19 Oct Maskinen Art Boat - The Umeå-Wasaline ferry. See separate program
17 Oct 5.00-8.00 pm We’re offering free food from the pantry and have talks with Stephen Lynam from MinFarm, and others - V – Pantry – in Swedish
17 Oct 6.30 pm Lecture with Lasse Berg BC - in Swedish
Saturday October 18 12.00-6.00pm Open Food Futures – Get some food and talk with us about sustainable food culture – K101 - in Swedish & English
3-4.30 pm Lecture about Fukushima with Atsuko Otsuka, photographer BM - in English
Sunday October 19 BM - in Swedish 1.00–4.30 pm Film: Ovärdet (30 min)+ paneldiscussion:
- Po Tidholm
- Gustav Hillbom
- Lis-Marie Hjortfors
Moderator: Moa Sandström, Umeå University
7 pm Concert - Väärt - med David Väyrynen


Participating Artists


Ohya Rica, Japan

I call myself a “time and site specific artist”. For I stick to my philosophy; Create on an open-air site. Use natural local materials. Accepting the nature and time there, eventually let my work return to earth. My intention is to visualize the ephemerality of life. Also, to highlight how precious life is, even in the decaying process.

Gunilla Bandolin, Sweden

I make places in the city or nature. Places that invite people to do things that they do not necessarily do in their everyday lives: Perform, take a bath, name children, have a party. My sculptures exists somewhere in-between architecture, land art and landscape. I call them social places.

Magdalena Dziurlikowska, Sweden

The core of her works are staged documentaries where she observe herself with a sharp eye. Her issues and her artistic practice si mixed with both black humor and a serious depth. Through her projects she examines the modern subjectivity where the individual is obsessed by the personal.

Basir Mahmood, Pakistan

Lives and works in Lahore, Pakistan.
In order to engage with situations around him, he ponders upon embedded social and historical terrains of the ordinary, as well as his personal milieu.
Using video, film or photograph, Mahmood weaves various threads of thoughts, findings and insights into poetic sequences and various forms of narratives.

Anthony Clair Wagner, Austria

Wagner questions and transgresses cultural boundaries between male and female, human and animal, culture and nature. His embodiment of monstrosity is an effort to question the normative limits forced on the human by society and culture. it visualizes both the horror and the allure of the monstrous other in an effort to question the restrictions of the human. The work is motivated by personal experiences and includes autobiographic elements.

Sisters of Jam - Moa & Mikaela Krestesen, Sweden

We are sisters and we are colleagues. Since 2008, Sisters of Jam have been working in interdisciplinary art projects using multiple media – photography, video, drawing, installation and text – in an ongoing investigation of community, solitude, historiography and continuity. Their work seeks to address a feminist dialogue over generations and geographies. A dialogue that is both virtual and allegorical; that reaches backwards and forwards and at the same time tells us something new. Sisters of Jam use collaborative work methods to overcome boundaries of genres and become wider, greater and stronger.

Siri Hermansen, Norway

Cinematographer, photographer and installation artist Siri Hermansen is an open and curious explorer. She intrepidly seeks out unique and often remote places for stories of local and global significance. Her aesthetic is an intimate one, which sees the artist form close and palpable relationships with her subjects.

Isabelle Fremeaux(Birkbeck), John Jordan and Kypros Kyprianou, France, UK

We had had enough of our lives in London: a couple in a flat, constantly staring at computer screens, always hooked into the internet, never using our hands to make things, rarely touching living systems, consuming too much energy, and working too hard. Despite being activists in the direct action ecological justice movements, we felt there was a chasm between our words and our deeds. Our protests had always been models of non-hierarchical, ecological life – reclaim the streets parties, the rebel clown army, summit mobilizations, and so on – but they were just temporary, cracks in capitalism that closed up as soon as we returned home. We wanted to find a way to change our lives radically, despite capitalism. So we set off on a journey, seven months on the road visiting eleven Utopian communities across Europe. We wanted to taste other ways of loving and eating, producing and sharing things, deciding together and rebelling, ones that lasted longer than sparks in the dark.

Matti Sumari, Finland

His artworks usually have a social dimension, as in an official library of discarded books or in a second hand restaurant with a coarse arranged from thrown away groceries. Sumari enters from the premisses that everything produced eventually ends up in a dumpster and can thus be reclaimed. He elevates found material to, for example, a mobile sculpture for composting - constructed out of an oil drum and found bikes that he dragged out of the river. By picking up the leftovers from the metabolism of the city, he takes part in a parasitic relationship to the steady flow of waste from society.

Kristoffer Palmgren, Sweden

One of the strongest emotions I experienced in my life was when I realized that everything is owned. Everywhere I walk: the hill, the tree, the grass, etc, is a property of somebody. I do not know why, but a lot of magic disappeared that day. I can not remove that feeling from inside of me, as it rubs up against me everyday. I wish some times that I would just have kept my eyes closed. A co-worker once got the advice: Do not look at the stars, some things are not meant to be understood. But that feels kind of lame. I want do dig around in what for me seems like reality, the places that have not been covered in concrete. At those times it is nice to look up, outwards. Away from this small sphere. See the celestial bodies that nobody owns, all free in that black swamp.

Lisa Busby, United Kingdom

In her capacity as a practicing musician, artist and researcher Lisa’s works spans the audio, visual and tactile/interactive; and in the past has incorporated a wide variety of media. Her work deliberately challenges notions of discipline specific categorisation and dissemination, placing itself across the boundaries of fine art, performance and pop music/culture. Her work has been presented in locations as diverse as nightclubs, music festivals, galleries, record shop windows and a haberdasher’s cutting table. As a musician and sound artist she is a member of the electronic pop outfit Sleeps in Oysters and noise-improv group Rutger Hauser. She also works as a solo artist and experimental DJ under the artist pseudonyms Lisa Sleeps and Mary and Polly. In gallery and site-specific contexts she explores the potential of popular music in installation and performance art. Most recently her output has concerned exploring unusual settings and locations, equipment and techniques in experimental DJ practice.

Agnieszka Kozlowska, Poland

My practice stems from experiments in the medium of photography and is driven by a fascination with the moment of photographic exposure, when a tangible link is formed between the light-sensitive surface and the physical world. Constructing primitive cameras, using historical photographic processes and making paper, I explore the status of a photograph as a physical trace rather than purely an image. I’m interested in how such unique photographic objects affected by rays of light reflected off the scene in front of the lens can signify that which escapes pictorial representation, for example embodied perception of the environment or durational experience of long distance walking. In the recently completed practice-led PhD I propose photography, a natural phenomenon that takes place essentially independently of human intervention, as a tool for representing what some cultural geographers have termed the more-than-human, sensuous dimensions of our interaction with the surrounding world.

Erik Mikael Gudrunsson, Sweden

I work with trying to depict northern landscapes and the exploitation of the natural resources in the north of Sweden; inquiries into how we are affected by the industrial transformation of the nature and landscape. My works are primarily photographic and take place over greater periods of time to track events and/or places.

Ignacio García Sánchez, Spain

Born in Madrid, currently living in Berlin. He holds a degree in Fine Arts from Universidad Complutense of Madrid and Hochschule für bildende Künste, Hamburg. Since 2009 his work has been shown in galleries like Marta Cervera (Madrid), PM8 (Vigo) or Luis Adelantado (Valencia). He has participated in exhibitions in Sala de Arte Joven, Círculo de Bellas Artes, Centro de Arte Complutense and Museo de la Ciudad, in Madrid; as well as in other venues in Spain and abroad: in Barcelona, León, Ourense, Valdepeñas, Alovera, México DF, Guatemala, Hamburg or Berlin.

Mark Salvatus, Phillipines

salvatus lives and works in Manila & Lucban, Philippines. He graduated cum laude at the UST College of Fine Arts and Design. His works deals with familiar objects, chance encounters, urbanism and everyday politics that cross various media from drawings, installations, photography, video, street art to interactive and participatory projects.

Antti Laitinen, Finland

Antti Laitinen’s works begin with a plan, but the final pieces are usually the result of circumstances and outcomes beyond his control. Laitinen, who has a background in photography and multimedia art, primarily stages performances that he then documents or records. Many of his projects involve open-ended, experimental, or durational activities; previous undertakings have included a photographic series produced while Laitinen lived in a forest without clothes, food, or water; rowing across bodies of water in various self-fashioned vessels; and drawings made by pressing his sweaty body on a surface. Disparate as his works are, they explore recurring themes of chance, endurance, communion with nature, absurd humor, and the passage of time.

Kaspars Lielgalvis, Latvia

Since 2010 he is developing the Artists Run Art Centre "Totaldobže" in former factory VEF, in Riga. Since 2011 developing his main current art project "Black Holes".


SUPERFLEX is an artist collective, active since 1993, and consisting of Rasmus Nielsen (1969), Jakob Fenger (1968) and Björnstjerne Christiansen (1969), who works with international collaborative partners for specific projects, covering issues such as power, democracy and self-organization. Projects have been realized in places such as Thailand, Europe and Brazil in an attempt to uncover and question governing economical structures and shift the balance between producer and consumer.

Erik Sjödin, Sweden

The works of Erik Sjödin circulates around interdependencies, relations in-between human and nature as well as questions of being and becoming. The projects he runs carry the characteristics of exploration and merge many diverse disciplines and fields of study. His works has included humans relationship to fire, cooking food from the Azolla plant as well as to construct housing for pollinators.

Ulla Thøgersen, Sweden

My work is a performance, based on the gifts of nature. I intend to collect edible plants to cook and share. I will collect lost textiles to dress up in. Two ideas are struggling against each other in my disorganized brain; To use a Triangia stove for making many small interventions in Umeå or to make one big intervention with a military cooking wagon.

Gustav Hillbom & Erik Viklund, Sweden

Gustav Hillbom (1982, Gällivare). Works as an artist and documentary film maker. He is educated at Konstfack, Stockholm and Parsons, New York. Currenly living in Umeå. Erik Viklund (1982, Luleå). Photographer, currently studying Fine Arts at Valand, Gothenburg.

Swetlana Heger-Davis, Czech Rep./Austria

Heger (1968), deals with inquiries surrounding capitalism, power and ideology, in particular how conceptions such as these manifest in visual communication, design or fashion.

John Söderberg, Sweden

Part of me is sculptor and part of me is inventor. I use any material but mostly wood and mainly materials that I find in my near environment, like in the forest or at the city dump. I make things with a strong physical or mental need, not separated from my life, and sometimes my life in a way turns into art. My last big project was a bicycle caravan that would function as my home during my travel to the region of Jämtland in Sweden.

Emma-Lina Ericson, Sweden

Ericson paints suggestive sceneries through musical arrangements and polyphonic narrations. Real stories and the self-experienced are reorganized and presented as melodies witnessing about facts and repetetative questions. Often formed into installations, or thematical "landscapes", Ericson weavs together her own singing, images and objects, opened for a visitor to enter och even merge with. With a interest in our communicative possibilities, limitations and misunderstandings, Emma-Lina Ericson uncovers the inner conversations of each of us as well as the society at large.

Chto Delat, Russia

The collective Chto Delat (What is to be done?) was founded in early 2003 by a workgroup of artists, critics, philosophers, and writers from St. Petersburg, Moscow, and Nizhny Novgorod with the goal of merging political theory, art, and activism. The group was constituted in May 2003 in St. Petersburg in an action called “The Refoundation of Petersburg.” Shortly afterwards, the original, as yet nameless core group began publishing an international newspaper called Chto Delat?. The name of the group derives from a novel by the Russian 19th century writer Nikolai Chernyshevsky, which might bring to mind the first socialist worker’s self-organizations in Russia, which Lenin actualized in his own publication, “What is to be done?” (1902). Chto Delat? sees itself as a self-organized platform for a variety of cultural activities intent on politicizing “knowledge production” through redefinitions of an engaged autonomy for cultural practice today.

My Villages, DE, UK, NL

The work shown during this festival is named Umeå Pantry, based on the concept from My Villages. The founders of My Villages all grew up in small rural communities: the artists Kathrin Böhm (DE/UK), Wapke Feenstra (NL) and Antje Schiffers (DE). they now live respectively in London, Rotterdam and Berlin. In 2003 they started to work as an artist cooperation. For years they had chatted about the farms and villages where they grew up. Their participatory art practice presents an utopian approach to community building.

Zanele Muholi, South Africa

Muholi, who describes herself as a "visual activist," has spent years documenting the lives of black lesbians and transgender people in South Africa. "We live in fear," Muholi said. "And what are we doing about it? You have to document. You are forced to document." Her projects, are meant to increase the visibility of gay and transgender individuals in black communities. By producing a multitude of powerful, positive portraits, she seeks to alter the cultural conversation in countries like South Africa and beyond. For Survival Kit, she is showing the film "Difficult Love".

Joost Conijn, The Netherlands

Joost Conijn re-invents himself in every artwork he makes. His work is the expression of the conversations he has with himself. He moves through life with an independent attitude; inspired, deliberately uninhibited. "Life is about challenges and overcoming fear. My work begins with the irresistible desire to move. It is about single-handedly creating opportunities, realizing plans, putting everything into effect for a moment of perfection." Conijn sets up a gate in the desert that opens automatically. Takes off in a plane that he built himself. Travels through Easter Europe in a wood-powered car made of wood, all the way to the Chernobyl zone. Films the neighbourhood kids for a year, capturing their life on the fringes of society. Improves his plane and then crashes it. He films a writer, confronting him with detailed questions, because he has to write a book himself. Joost re-connects us to the intensity of every first experience.

Akram Al Halabi, Austria / Golan Heights

Atsuko Otsuka, Japan

Hannah Anbert, Denmark

Anbert is a Copehagen based artist and activist. Her practice include sound, installations and performances. Staging reality or turning reality into her stage, she is seeking a place where fiction is not only fiction, theatre is not only analysing the world but also changing it. Her practice is a playground where the audience is invited to play along. In this manner she seeks to explore social dynamics, challenging how truths and norms evolve and answer the old question: ”What demon possess me that I behave so well?” The work Find the next quiet space to dwell your gaze is a restorative walk that will accompany the listener through the constant flow of meaningless information meeting us on our way through the city. The audio walk offer a series of mental exercises, suggesting a different way of employing our senses in order to restore our attention. It is an exercise of counter disciplining of the body.

Other Guests - Musicians, Lecturers, etc

Stephen Burch is an English songwriter currently based in Germany. He began making music whilst living on a remote farm in rural Ireland - using acoustic guitars, the family's piano, brooms and chains. His lyrical, narrative songs bear the influence of the fields of County Cork and the old streets of Berlin. Images of persecution abound, songs of urgent travel and a search for home - the unifying theme is that of grave drama within 'The Great Park'.

Stehpen Burch / The Great Park Singer/Songwriter, England/Tyskland

Mona Ersare originates from the Swedish ballad tradition as a lyricist, educated at the Nordic School for Swedish ballad tradition in Kungälv. After a few years of touring with her swedish material at festivals, cafés, libraries and community centers she begun writing in english and “Crack it, heal it, sing it” took form. The music is a delightful mix of Swedish ballad tradition, folk and pop, inspired by role models like Jason Mraz, Tracy Chapman and Johnny Cash. Her latest performance is named “The hard core – my story of the hardcore movement in Umeå”. In it we, among other things, get to hear traditional swedish ballad versions of hardcore-hits.

Mona Ersare Singer/Songwriter, Umeå, Sweden

Song, guitar, violin, mandolin, banjo, percussions, contrabass and harmonica. Sometimes a saw or a accordion too. With these instruments we play american folk where genres such as country, bluegrass, cajun, old time, blues, jugband and fucking pissed off songs from unions get along in a allegiance of blasphemy. No twists, just pure power. Sofia Nilsson: Vocals, Björn Bergström: Guitar, dobra, vocals Kristian Tuoremaa: Banjo, vocals Linus Johansson: contrabass Mattias Johansson: Mandolin, harmonica, percussions, vocals.

The Gravedigger and the Teacher Singer/Songwriter, Umeå, Sweden

With the help of her own voice and a acoustic guitar Julia perform her own versions of, among others, Andrew Jackson Jihad, Streetlight Manifesto, Cobra Skulls and Toh Kay.

Julia Hariz Singer/Songwriter, Umeå, Sweden

Lasse Berg, previous journalist, documentary film maker, honorary doctor at Lund University, appreciated narrator and radio persona. Having had a special focus on Asia during the 60's and 70's, Bergh has been based in southern Africa, Rwanda and Ethiopia up until 2008. His literary trilogy about Kalahari has attracted great attention. “Skymmningssånger I Kalahari”, the second book in the series, was released in 2011 and was nominated for the swedish "August Prize". During march 2014, the final and third part, “Ut ur Kahari. Drömmen om det goda livet” was released. Be sure to be in time for this event, as we are expecting a high interest! Seats are able to be reserved via the Bookcafé. Fika is available for 20 SEK.

Lasse Berg author, journalist & doc-filmmaker, Sweden

Åsa Mobergs breakfast-talk preceeds the official opening of Survival Kit, being held 10-12 at the opening (satur-)day. Moberg is an author, journalist, translator, as well as a relentless nuclear-sceptic. She has been involed from the beginning in the early anti-nuclear movements as well as being a prominent speaker and writer regarding nuclear issues. Her latest contribution relased earlier this year, "Ett extremt dyrt och livsfarligt sätt att värma vatten", is probably the most comprehensive book in the subject ever written in swedish. If you are interested in attending this lecture, be sure to reserve your tickets well in advance via the Bookcafé! Breakfast is available for 50 SEK.

Åsa Moberg author, journalist, translator, Sweden

Väärt, from Malmberget/Umeå, Sweden, will have the last say during this festival. Songs will be performed from their most recent album - Det kommer ett skalv, wich roughly translates to: A coming shaking / There will be a shaking

Entrance is free! Be sure to come in time to ensure that seats are available. (144 seats)

Väärt Musicians/group, Sweden

Hailed as the philosopher poet of the environmental movement, Derrick Jensen is author of twenty books, including Endgame and A Language Older Than Words. He holds a degree in creative writing from Eastern Washington University, a degree in mineral engineering physics from the Colorado School of Mines, and has taught at Eastern Washington University and Pelican Bay State Prison. He has packed university auditoriums, conferences, and bookstores across USA, stirring them with revolutionary spirit.

Derrick Jensen will attend via Skype-link in the seminar "What is to be done?" on October 9th. The event takes place in the Flexhall (144 seats), Bildmuseet and might attrackt many visitors, so be sure to get there in time!

Derrick Jensen Environmental activist, writer, USA
Photos of Åsa Moberg and Lasse Berg, by Wikipedia/Bengt Oberger. Photo of Väärt by Jonatan Nylander.

About us

Verkligheten "The Reality", is the main organizer of the Survival Kit Festival in Umeå. Our work is made in close collaboration with Bildmuseet (esp. Sujy Lee and Cecilia Andersson), Galleri Maskinen, Vita Kuben and Umeå Academy of Fine Art (esp. Micael Norberg). A lot of others have also been involved in the process and are as important, among you are: Studiefrämjandet, Folkets Bio, Trailer Gallery, Latvian Center for Contemporary Art, Umeå2014, Konstfrämjandet. For economical support: Umeå2014/Umeå kommun, Swedish Arts Council, Nordic Culture point, IASPIS, The Swedish Arts Grants Committee, Region Västerbotten, Dutch Culture Centre for International Cooperation, The Spanish Embassy, The Längmanska Cultural Fund, Sigulda Commune and Arkitektkopia.

Project Manager

Cellphone: +46(0)70-111 29 39
Verkligheten: +46(0)90-10 99 00
Email: info [@]

Festival Office

Pilgatan 16
903 31 Umeå

Festival opening hours

Tues 3-8 pm, Wed-Sun 12-5 pm
Mon closed

Info about Maskinen Art Boat - Umeå-Wasaline-Vasa

Mobile: +46(0)70-383 66 69 [Gallery Maskinen]
Email: galleri.maskinen [@]