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Praksis Oslo

Praksis logo © Praksis Oslo

Live or Buy Residency at Praksis Oslo

I participated in the residency developed with Nina Sarnelle, Ida Falck Øien and HAiKw/ with a collaboration with Norsk Teknisk Museum.

"Our fragile sense of self needs support, and this we get by having and possessing things because, to a large degree, we are what we have and possess."

(Tuan, Yi-Fu , 1980, "The Significance of the Artifact," Geo-graphical Review, 70 (4), 462-472.)

We live in capitalism. Its power seems inescapable. So did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art…

(Le Guin, Ursula K., "Speech at the National Book Awards," 2014.)


Present-day systems of consumption emphasise the construction of the sense of self through acquisition – having. They present the act of buying a house or upgrading to the latest tech innovation as a kind of “self-improvement”; and in some ways, it may be simpler and easier to have than to be or become. However, satisfying the individual desire to have drives ever-increasing wealth inequality, labour exploitation and environmental devastation, and within all this, “cultural producers” play a precarious and contradictory role.

What functions do art, fashion and design serve beyond consumerism? Perhaps we can loosen capitalism’s ideological hold on the concept of exchange? Human beings intrinsically have much more than their accumulations of objects: ideas, bodies, and ways of relating to both human and non-human others that are not predetermined by economic transactionality. On both a macro- and a micro-scale, there is great scope for cultural producers to re-think ecologies of consumption.

Residency 16: Live or Buy has been developed with artist Nina Sarnelle, clothing designer Ida Falck Øien and clothing label HAiKw/. It will offer participants the opportunity to explore these critical questions in intimate, personal and physical ways. Sarnelle and Falck Øien plan to test the potential of dematerialised, interactive techniques (borrowed from areas such as live action role play, therapy, improvisation and social practice), to escape the pervasive logic of the free market and – through fantasy, allegory or live experiment – propose alternative forms of social or economic organization. Their goal is not to arrive at a grand solution but rather (in Donna Haraway’s phrase) to stay with the trouble, embracing doubt and working with failure and intuition to develop new practices of research, inquiry and “dirty hybrids” of resistance.

Residents are warmly encouraged to bring their own specialisms to bear in the course of the residency. When applying, please articulate (a) the relevant background knowledge and experience you will bring to the residency, (b) the particular interests or topic you plan to explore during your stay, and (c) its relationship to the agendas above. Applications are welcomed from cultural producers working at any point along the theory-practice spectrum.


Nina Sarnelle and Ida Falck Øien use both theory and art/design practice to look at issues of consumer power and sustainability. Their work has focused on the clothing industry; on- and offline scams; the politics of “economic development”, and labour infrastructures in the digital economy.



The Norsk Teknisk Museum fosters understanding and debate about technology, industry, science and medicine. PRAKSIS and NTM’s forthcoming programmes share a focus on climate change and possible futures. During 2020 they will work together to maximise synergies between their programmes, exploring possibilities for PRAKSIS residency study of NTM collections, conversations with NTM's specialist staff, and exhibits or events in its galleries.



Nina Sarnelle is an artist and musician living in Los Angeles, with a BA from Oberlin College and an MFA from Carnegie Mellon University, and additional training in vocal performance and movement improvisation. She is co-founder of two artist collectives, the Institute for New Feeling and dadpranks. Her work includes intimate participatory performances, large public events, music composition, video, text and sculpture. Her practice thrives on the energy of collaboration. Driven by an intuitive style of research, Sarnelle’s projects attempt to reconcile powerful abstract systems with the most personal or mundane parts of everyday life. Her work has been shown at Whitechapel Gallery (London), Hammer Museum (LA), Getty Center (LA), Ballroom Marfa (TX), MoMA (NY), Istanbul Modern (Turkey), Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (Berlin), NADA (Miami), Museum of Art, Architecture & Technology (Lisbon), Fundacion PROA (Buenos Aires), Black Cube (Denver), Southern Exposure (San Francisco), Recess (NY), Akademie Schloss Solitude (Germany), Jardin Essential (Brussels), UNSW Galleries (Sydney), Project 88 (Mumbai), Kevin Space (Vienna), Villa Croce Contemporary Art Museum (Genova), Center for Contemporary Arts (Santa Fe), Mwoods (Beijing), MoCA Cleveland, Human Resources (LA), Borscht Festival (Miami), SPACES (Cleveland), Threewalls (Chicago), Vox Populi (Philadelphia), Miller Gallery (Pittsburgh), and featured in Frieze, Art in America, Vogue Italy, Huffington Post, SFMoMA, Creators Project, FlashArt, and Hyperallergic. More information available at

Ida Falck Øien is a designer and researcher based in Oslo, with educational background in fine arts and fashion from respectively The National Academy of the Arts in Bergen (2005) and The National Academy of the Arts in Oslo (2007). After working in fashion internationally for years she costarted the collaborative fashion platform and label HAiKw/ in 2012 and continues to work with collaborative and interdisciplinary research, on and through clothing in and beyond the fashion realm. Currently, Falck Øien is enrolled in the artistic research programme at The National Academy of the Arts in Oslo, department of design. Her PhD project, called Transactional Aesthetics explores the agency of and critical potential in consumption centres and transition points and their mechanics. Haikw/ is a collaborator to her PhD project due for delivery 2021. 


HAiKw/ (est. 2012) is an Oslo based clothing label operating as a collaborative platform working through/with/around clothing. Their name reflects their working method; the Norwegian word haik means to hitch hike. They work mainly through collaborative practices and ethnographic research to investigate thematics relating to the human psyche as approached through clothing as a carrier of stories, dreams and communication. They have held artists residencies at Rogaland Center for Contemporary Art and Bergen Kunsthall Upstairs in Norway. They were Bik Bok prize winner 2018, Söderberg prize 2017 nominee, and have been collected by the National Museum of Art and Design in Oslo, have exhibited and performed their collaborations at Rod Bianco Gallery, Galleri Golsa, Kunstnernes Hus, Format Gallery in Oslo and Bergen Kunsthall, Wiels Museum, Brussels, F15 in Moss. HAiKw/ is run by Harald Lunde Helgesen and Ida Falck Øien. Their website is:


Norsk Teknisk Museum is Norway’s national museum of technology, industry, science and medicine. It was established in 1914 and is located at Kjelsås, Oslo. NMT envisions to foster engagement, knowledge production and playful interaction through mediation, conservation and research. Around 250,000 visitors come to the museum annually, with more than half of them being children and youth.

At Praksis Oslo

March 2020.

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