Launch by Artist in Retreat: “Birds don’t take the train, but we do”

The collective ‘Artist in Retreat’, consisting of Xenia Klein, Elisa Cuesta, Rosa van Walbeek, Victoria de la Torre, Haevan Lee and Serene Hui, presents the publication “Birds don’t take the train, but we do” at Page Not Found.

At the invitation of Xenia Klein a group of artists traveled to Blekinge – a small archipelago region in the south of Sweden – to create a residency relevant to their surroundings. Together they explored bird migrations, eel fishing, stone carvings, personal childhood memories and distinct food customs within the context of Blekinge’s archipelago culture. The project “Birds don’t take the train, but we do” shape-shifted into an archival exercise and an artistic display of the everyday, made accessible through an online living archive.

Now a portable exhibition has materialised, taking the form of a box: a treasury filled with found gold. This publication will be shared with the public alongside Artist in Retreat’s online archive. Afterwards the box journeys back to Blekinge.

Elisa Cuesta is an artist and designer working around the integration of technology within society and nature, addressing themes such as the value of data, information infrastructures, and the figure of the diagram as a tool for speculation and knowledge generation. Her work has been exhibited at Science Gallery Dublin, Quartair (The Hague), LABoral Centro de Arte y Creación Industrial (Gijón), Sala de Arte Joven (Madrid), or Sala Borrón (Oviedo). She has been awarded the Asturias Joven 2019 Award to Young Visual Artists and the XI LABjoven_Los Bragales Production Prize. 

Xenia Klein are an artist based in The Hague (NL), Torhamn (Blekinge) and Stockholm (SE). We work with the materials and mediums of words, graphic prints, alternative photography, book binding, writing, conversing and reading. As a visual artist we try to make artworks and exhibitions flowering fantasies about the flight from trauma (childhoods are a pain in the ass). As a writer and researcher we try to make understandings around the Evil, since evil is unconditionally existing in every life. As a freelancing journalist, producer and editor we try to create innovative, creative and subversive content through podcasting and journalistic writing.

Haevan Lee (b.Republic of Korea) is a contemporary artist who expresses the regional context of specific places through various forms including painting, installation and video. Her DMZ Landscape Series turned restricted or photography-prohibited areas into paintings. She is producing Dopa+Project, a collaborative project which explores the sustainability of collectives across borders by collaborating with multinational artists and researchers. She has contributed to various exhibitions including Bangkok Art Biennale (2020) and Venice Architect Biennale Korean Pavilion(2021

Rosa van Walbeek is an artist specialising in multi-sensory work, who investigates how different disciplines and senses relate by composing them as one. Her work questions our relation to the natural world. As an instrumentalist, performer and assistent she worked with JeugdOrkestNederland, Eelt theater collective and Sounds of Change.
Currently she is working as a performer and vocalist with Iris van Peppen and conducts a philosophical reading class at the Utrecht Conservatory.

Victoria de la Torre is an artist working on the intersection between art and design. In 2019 she co-founded Macedonia, a research-based design studio focused on finding meaningful solutions through collaborative and creative processes. In her latest project, A.I.R., the outcome of an artistic residency hosted by The Dock Accenture and the Science Gallery Dublin, she, as part of the collective Multiplay, has explored the notion of human agency and its behaviour in systems in flow.

Serene Hui’s research-led practices reframe and rethink conditions of the contemporary through politically driven art-making and inquiry. At the intersection of art, theory, and politics, she addresses obscure issues often by creating an ontological shift of displacement in her works. Through juxtaposing and converging dissimilar situations, sometimes dilemmas, in the same space-time, the works raise questions such as how do one respond to, or what could one possibly get out of, the moment of conflict, estrangement or resistance.

This project was made possible with the kind support of Region of Blekinge, Municipality of Karlskrona and the art foundation ‘Konst i Blekinge’.

The event can alternatively be followed online here.

Starts at 18:00.

This is a free event.