Reading presupposes a certain form of interaction with the archive and the locality. History allows us to crystallize the chronology of events through the optics of time, to build linearity and a hierarchy of narratives, through texts and written memories of the Second World War. This linearity acquires a kind of hierarchy of events and accents, thus there is a risk of leaving unread elements that remain secondary or in some way less focused in the broad representation of events.
The archaic nature of reading includes the narrative of social existence as such, which deprives our archive of its plasticity. Returning to the archive as a kind of presence, the variability of narratives and reading through the form of one's own artistic practice, in our case through the interiority of the cave, through its acoustics, and exploration of the body beyond the history, beyond the landscape itself.
This fluidity decolonizes the archive while forming the opportunity to come into touch with landscapes regarding our artistic practice.
We are opening up a space in which reading can take the form of a fluid narrative. The space where there is a displacement of the boundaries of time and history. Similar to the forms of oral tales, where there is a retelling of the line from the narrator where each subsequent narrator interprets the story through distance and body, weaving the storyline between oneself and the environment. The variability of such an archive opens up a space for cultural symbiosis, where the moment of narration is born through reading and telling on behalf of the reader, and the reader, in turn, begins his/her own story.
The chronology of historical events ceases to be a vector line, allowing us to start reading and touching the story in the first person at any time.
The fluidity of the archive erases the boundaries between language as a rigid linguistic structure and as a chronology relative to the narrator in the context of history and language through writing. Thus, this archive becomes a mobile form, where time is nonlinear, where contact presupposes the realization of being as a form of this archive. While the archive itself carries a form that is emerging and expanding as a result of contact through the reader's body, where the data obtained is a form of collective knowledge. Such a form is fragmentary and performative with respect to history on the one hand, and on the other hand, it builds new contexts from outside, which in turn opens up a place for this archive as collective knowledge as such.
Growing Within Itself
In parallel, while working on (re)reading the same texts related to the region of Sørøya, we are faced with the fact that our approaches differ greatly. Focusing on the language, in a certain sense shifts the boundaries of understanding and interpretation of this reading into some form of artistic method.
On the one hand, all the texts we found are written in the language of the region - Norwegian, which narrows the accessibility of touches to an outside reader, and on the other hand, it opens up the possibility of searching for a form of interaction with the local linguistic landscape through the rejection of direct translation into a language accessible to the international public - English.
The rejection of direct translation as an understanding of historical texts allows us to experiment with the archive as a space for searching for a method of artistic practices, where understanding goes through the stages of several touches with the region directly. And as a result, the possibility to open this space for an outside viewer and experimental crossing of related practices and spheres as crosse disciplinary reading through the landscape. For example, carving out sounding text elements, communication prerequisites, cutting traces of everyday details, such as a ritual of cooking inside the cave or the act of speaking in the dark. Such seemingly simple accents allow us to create a complex structure for subsequent artistic translation as (re)mapping being and touching history through our own artistic practice. Thereby expanding the knowledge of the already existing archive through the sensations of the current everyday life and the fluidity of time as such. The nine basic themes that were carved during the first one: movement, embodiment, communication, darkness, body, sound ecology, landscape, food, history - readings brought us to the fact that the archive space through language, namely the search for an artistic language within the historical archive, allows us to follow a non-linear narrative and interpretation as such. This archive becomes a kind of macroorganism, a form that is dynamic and growing within itself.