Inger Wold Lund is a Berlin based artist and writer born in Bergen, Norway. Her passion for language and its different spheres, like structure, ways of story-telling and its change over time is mirrored both in her writing and art. And is always the starting point of her work. Beside pub-lishing her first book early this year she exhibits also in Slovenia, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Germany.
You first studied Literature and Medicine and then changed to Art. Was there certain reason, person or event that influenced you to do so?
There was not one specific reason for me changing fields, and truth be told I find it a bit difficult to pinpoint the events that made me change directions. In many ways I am still interested in the same things that spun me towards medicine in the first place: Looking at things very closely, trying to figure out how they are connected.
Where do you get your inspiration from? And what influences your work? Do you consider other artists or art influential? Is there somebody you admire?
I generally find myself lucky to have good friends in my field whose work I find very inspira-tional. Of artists with a Norwegian background I can mention Camilla Steinum and Hanne Lippard, who are both also based in Berlin. Also I find great inspiration in artists from previous generations like Mary Kelly, Lee Lozano and Sophie Calle. And I enjoy the work of writers like Anaïs Nin and Marguerite Duras. I could go on mentioning names. One of the things that I like about the field I am in is that somehow it is like a continuing conversation between peers that have lived different lives different places at different times.
You work both as an artist and as a writer. Do you work separately with your profession or do you combine them?
My work always has its starting point in language. I am interested in the repetition of certain stories in the time we live in, the structures of the language that we use to tell these stories, and especially the metaphors in the language that contribute to make the difference between the individual and its surroundings diminish. In my work I look into how language itself is fictional by nature, and how, as time goes, memories change, and we reinvent the stories that once used to be our reality to fit the landscape of stories that we have heard before. Having had the possibility to publish with literary presses has been great in terms of taking my work to audiences I would not have reached otherwise. But my work stays the same, although the reading of it might change slightly. And I do not prefer one reading over another.
Can you describe your art process? What is your work philosophy?
I get up every morning. Almost every night I go back to bed.
You live in Berlin right now. Was there a particular reason and has it had an impact on your work?
I moved here after receiving a small grant from Norway, and thinking the money would last longer here. Liking the city I decided to stay I am very happy living in Berlin right now. But I do miss the sea.
I think everywhere you live impact who you are, and who you are impact your work. Here I have come in contact with a scene that is interested in many of the same things as I am interested in. And the ice cream is good in Berlin.
Is there a difference between the German and the Norwegian art scene?
One of the differences that it is easy to pinpoint is that Norway has a well developed system for funding of the arts. Germany has more of a tradition for a commercial art scene, although Berlin is not the city where this is most visible.
What are you working on right now and can you explain it?
Right now I am working on a series of erotic audio tours. For the next one I am teaming up with sound artist Claire Tolan on making an one that will be available for free download online and will provide stories and sounds for you to listen to while circling Berlin on the ringbahn. I should mention that I have a chapbook coming out on Ugly Duckling Presse later this summer as well. It is a collection of short stories under the name “Leaving Leaving Behind Behind”. The press is based in New York, and the book will be released in London, but if you live in one of the other larger western cities it will soon be available in a bookstore near you
For further informations about Inger check out her co-website here and about her first book release in English “leaving leaving behind behind” go here.
Interview: Skadi Borchert
Editing: Rosalie Delaney