The Kingdoms of Elgaland-Vargaland is an art project by Carl Michael von Hausswolff and Leif Elggren’s that play with the notion of the nation state. From time immemorial, both real and fictional kingdoms or small states have been proclaimed. The majority hold a utopian vision of a better world than the one we live in – how does Elgaland-Vargaland do this?
Since 27 May 1992, the Kingdoms of Elgaland-Vargaland has been a continuous art project by artists Carl Michael von Hausswolff and Leif Elggren. In 2017 the kingdoms turn 25, and will be celebrated at the museum with a review of how King Michael I and King Leif have developed the monarchies over the years. See documents and items belonging to the kingdoms.
The museum will present a selection of Leif Elggren and Carl Michael von Hausswolff’s 25-year project- The exhibition will display paraphernalia (items), documents and events that have arisen in connection with the kingdoms’ existence.
The kingdoms are composed of the world’s geographical, mental and digital borderlands. Most striking is the no man’s land between all the state borders, however an annex of radio frequencies and digital portals also exists.
Elgaland-Vargaland is a polity with its own constitution and there are currently 34 embassies and consulates around the world. The national anthem, over one hour long, sounds like all national anthems brought together. A symptomatic gesture. Everyone is welcome to become a citizen of the double monarchy, and automatic citizenship is given to all the deceased.
The objects you can see in the exhibition visualise what constructs a kingdom, as well as what creates a superstructure of the artists’ intellectual attitudes to linguistic sentence constructions. The motto, “Det finns en kula för varje konung” [There is a ball for every king] can be found in several languages, but what does it actually mean? You can discover clues for this, and much more, in the Elgaland-Vargaland exhibition at the Pontus Hultén Study Gallery from 9 September until 12 November 2017.