Linnea Langfjord Kristensen
Linnea Langfjord Kristensen (1991) is an artist, theatre-maker, researcher and writer from Denmark. Before coming to the RCA she studied Fine Arts at The Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Her work has been shown at exhibitions and museums such as Fringe Arts Bath (UK), Stedelijk Musem Amsterdam (NL) and De Vishal (NL). Upcoming solo shows include Art Room 1000Fryd in Denmark.
My projects take the form of kaleidoscopic performances/plays, encounters, books, and workshops. In different ways they investigate the production and distribution of meaning, realities, and languages, with special attention to the ways in which narratives around “the meaningful” are embodied in everyday life. I work with a desire to peel away layers of the world I am inhabiting – dismantling dominating realities and languages to create new ones, however small, fantastical, poetic, sad, weird, or challenging. My practice is guided by continuously developing methods for radical relations which allows for an alternative knowledge and value production and consumption through dependency and intimacy.
Character descriptions — Apart from Dominating Power Structures, all characters adopt the name of their actor.
As the play has moved online due to Covid-19 I have developed and engaged in entirely new processes to push the boundaries of digital theatre, rehearsals and acting.
MC cannot remember anything or keep a straight thought for longer periods of time. Fighting to make him remember again is his old friend who has been visiting him every week for the last two years. A recurring event he never recalls. The mother X yearns to become independent, but what exactly happened to her daughter? And what is MC’s relation to this? B2 has always been told he was destined to become a famous writer, so does it matter that the stories he writes harm the people around him? Always watching and dictating is the Child, forcing everyone to keep busy, reach their full potential and strive to be real people. If they do not listen she will penalise them with fines or death. This story is one of loss, measures of success, friendship and the struggle to survive for those who crack under the pressure to be real.
Medium:Performance, video, trailer
Size:1 hour and 10 minutes
Narrative of success and endless progress — Diagram showing a dominating narrative of how to become a successful human being/real person. Following Theodore Adorno, we live in a society whose culture pursues progress at whatever cost. This means, that which is “other,” whether human or nonhuman, gets shoved aside, exploited, or destroyed. The all-consuming engine driving this process is an ever-expanding capitalist economy. This manifests itself in the actions, goals and wishes of people in their everyday lives trying to reach their full potential and endlessly progress. Because that is a value in our culture. Furthermore, there is a promise that this is how you become successful.
Play World — Diagram showing how the world of the play works.
Every week I used have more or less the same conversation with a housemate which revolved around her hunt for independence. Whenever she needed another person, she declared a strong wish for being able to do everything independently. She believed she was failing because she was not yet independent. Because when you are independent in life, you have made it right? When you can feed yourself, pay rent, get through emotional problems alone and in general, do life purely by your own support, you are successfully a successful human being. This is a contradictory conversation, as she needed me to share her longing for independence with.
Why is individual independence something to aim for when it is so difficult to reach? Why is success in this particular way something positive, when it brings so much negative impact on people’s mental health with it because no one is ever good enough? Why is society’s need for endless progress and people reaching that unmeasurable, elusive full potential good, when some of the consequences are a suffering planet emptied of resources and an all-over decline in mental well-being?
The diagrams and brief descriptions are ways to visualise why many of us might feel, that the words in the above vocabulary, are fitting descriptions of how to become a successful, independent and real human being according to the society in which we live and how they (might) affect us negatively.