Community Services

Erik Sjödin and Mia Isabel Edelgart

Community Services is a new exhibition in Marabouparken’s BOX and park that explores the life of bees and how they have been understood, written about, cared for, neglected and persecuted by humans and our activities. Community Services contains a number of different activities and collaborations that seek to highlight the importance of these pollinators and the urgency to expand the normalised human-centred perspective we inhabit today, in order to create more consideration and respect for other forms of life. Community Services includes Our Friends the Pollinators workshops, Bee Shed, a new sculpture and functioning pollinator house in Marabouparken and neighbouring Lötsjön’s park and an exhibition in Marabouparken’s BOX including Erik Sjödin’s The Political BeeKeeper’s Library and Mia Edelgart’s film Hearts in Tiny Chests (PS) Pollination Services and is a collaboration with Sundbyberg Stad and Sundbyberg Library.

Political Beekeeper’s Library – Erik Sjödin

This special 26 book library is an effort to collect, organise and activate books where parallels are drawn between how bees and humans are socially and politically organised. The books in the library show a fascinating narrative beginning with Aristotle’s History of Animals(4th century BCE) to Charles Butler’s The Feminine Monarchy (1609) to Bee Wilson’s The Hive (2004). What starts as a story of a patriarchal monarchy ends with a tale of radical democracy.

Hearts in Tiny Chests (PS) Pollination Services – Mia Isabel Edelgart

Offering another perspective is the illuminating film by Mia Isabel Edelgart, the culmination of a long-term research project exploring bees and their critical role in sustaining various forms of life. The film focuses on the maintenance and care work bees carry out for our environment. A form of labour continually overlooked in patriarchal societies. Edelgart draws upon the experiences of her own body as she undergoes pregnancy and the birth of her first child when she explores the relationships we have to the non-verbal and the non-human, and outlines the parallels between the care-work performed by mothers and bees alike.

These two works will be shown in Marabouparken’s BOX –  a project space for supporting artists at an important stage in their career.

Our Friends the Pollinators – Erik Sjödin

Our Friends the Pollinators is a workshop for kids, youths and adults to learn how to build homes for pollinators such as honeybees, wild bees and bumble bees out of birch bark, reed, and other organic materials. The workshop will take place in Marabouparken at a number of occasions during the exhibition.

Bee Shed – Erik Sjödin

A new sculpture is entering Marabouparken, a sculpture that also functions as a large house for pollinators. The placement of Bee Shed takes into consideration its proximity to water, plants, sunlight and nearby habitat so that is the best location for bees to set up home. Reused wood is built around a frame to provide shelter from rain and wind, before other organic materials such as drilled wood logs, and bundles of reed are placed inside – creating nesting places for the pollinators. Marabouparken proved its significance in 2008 when it won the award for Sweden’s most beautiful park. But the award raises the question: beautiful from who’s perspective? Parks are built for human recreation and relaxation but they also provide important habitat for wildlife, insects and plants. What would Marabouparken look like if it was built from the perspective of the wildlife that use the park (arguably a far bigger user-group than humans)? The Bee Shed draws upon ideas within the park’s history to extend and promote a multi-species perspective. The Bee Shed is planned to be a long term feature of the park and hopefully brings with it a new consciousness and appreciation for alternative methods that we could use to support the life of non-humans in Marabouparken.

Erik Sjödin focuses his art and research projects on interdependencies and relationships between beings, things, and phenomena including studying human relationships to fire, cultivating and cooking aquatic plants, research on relationships between bees and humans, and engagements with social and ecological cultivation initiatives.

Mia Isabel Edelgart is an eco-feminist and artist living in Copenhagen, Denmark. In her works problems of subjecthood in the face of climate changes and social crisis are battled from the position of the amateur researcher in a hostile Eurocentric reality. She works with video, text, installation, sound and performance. Informing her solo practice and vice versa is her deeply collectivist based activities in long term collaborations with the performance / improvisation choir Syvende og Sidst, Deirdre J Humphrys and an unnamed group centered around an open space studio on Drejervej in Cph. Mia Isabel Edelgart studied fine arts at Walls and Space with Nils Norman at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts.

In collaboration with the Municipality of Sundbyberg and Bibliotek Sundbyberg

14 June–26 August 2018
Opening 13 June, 5–8pm