Image courtesy of National Arts Centre

Meet the Artists

Ottawa, Ontario

September 24, 2022

Presented by
National Arts Centre

Flag of Finland
Flag of Iceland
Flag of Norway
Free Event

Join the artists of the SPHERE Festival: musicians, writers, photographers, performers, in a round table discussion about art and climate.

This event is presented as part of the NAC Orchestra’s SPHERE Festival.

See below for Nordic participants.

Photographers, Eyes as Big as Plates
Riitta Ikonen & Karoline Hjorth

The ongoing photography series Eyes as Big as Plates started out in 2011 studying personifications of nature and folkloric explanations of natural phenomena. A decade later it has evolved into a continual search for modern human’s belonging in nature, taking the Norwegian-Finnish artist duo Karoline Hjorth and Riitta Ikonen to sixteen countries on a quest to understand our relationship with our surroundings. The second book in the series features new portraits produced in collaboration with retired wrestling coaches, pub patrons, Sami reindeer herders, Aboriginal uncles, kantele players, librarians, wild boar hunters, and surfers across four continents. To mark the project’s ten-year anniversary, it also includes contributions from several guest writers and an extended field notes section revealing the behind-the-scenes action of each portrait.

Riitta Ikonen & Karoline Hjorth have collaborated since 2011 on publications and projects including Eyes as Big as Plates (ongoing), The World in London (2012), Time is a ship that never casts anchor (2014–18), Signal, Lights, Connected for the PyeongChang Winter Olympics (2018), TEDMED Talk 2020, and Finnskogen Understories (ongoing). Finnish artist Riitta Ikonen received her MA from the Royal College of Art in 2008. Norwegian photographer, artist and writer Karoline Hjorth received her MA from the University of Westminster (London) in 2009.

Conceptor, a shimmering ornament of silt
Halla Steinunn Stefánsdóttir

Performer, composer, curator Halla Steinunn Stefánsdóttir is one of Iceland’s leading figures within the early and contemporary music scene. She has been the artistic director of Nordic Affect since its inception in 2005. Halla Steinunn’s work has been a tour de force when it comes to work with composers, performers, visual artists, and producers. She is driven by an ecosystemic outlook on creation, set to further explore its world-making possibilities through music‘s many mediated relationships.

Halla Steinunn‘s compositional output has spanned everything from electro-acoustic compositions to sound and media installations. 2018 saw the release of her work He(a)r on Nordic Affect’s album by the same title. The album was featured in various best-of- the-year lists, including The Boston Globe, I Care if You Listen and Second Inversion. Recent works have included Spherical White with Diamond, a site-respondent installation created for Curated Place and NATUR (UK) in collaboration with National Trust Formby (UK) and Fjärilarna steg upp (The butterflies ascended) an installation of 8 mono channels created for The Botanical Garden in Lund (SE). Among upcoming projects, alongside the NAC Orchestra’s commission is the release of the strengur album project on Carrier Records.