Kunstneriske og kreative prosesser i stedsutvikling: eksempler fra kystsamfunn i nord

Thomas Haraldseid

Abstract


The purpose of this article has been to discuss the role of art in place-making. Three examples are used to address this topic within a rural context. Vardø in Norway and Teriberka in Russia, places along the Norwegian-Russian Barents coast connected to the Arctic landscape, are suffering from centralisation and decline in coastal fisheries. These places exist on hold, due to the high degree of uncertainty about the future. This region is affected by climate change and new industrial development plans. A major issue is that the images of Arctic landscapes rarely address local hopes for future development. Tourism is one of the emerging industries in the Arctic. The use of creative resources in tourism, involving art and architecture, is increasingly influencing rural development strategies and policies, also in Norway. An important starting point for this article has been to discuss alternative ways to engage with art in place-making beyond economic value-orientation.

In the article, the following research question has been developed: How can art contribute to local engagement and creative processes in place-making in the encounter between the everyday and tourist landscape? The three examples used in the article are Steilneset (a memorial, Vardø), Komafest street art festival (local mobilization, Vardø), and New Chapter (geopolitical critique, Teriberka). The author uses empirical data from an in-depth case study of development processes in Vardø, in addition to fieldwork in Teriberka. The empirical analysis is based on multiple sources of evidence, with interviews and participatory observation as the main methods. Different traditions have inspired the theoretical framework involving place-specific art, creativity, place-making and literature about landscape.

The author concludes that Steilneset (as part of the Norwegian national tourist route project) achieves its objectives by enhancing attractiveness for tourism and local pride. However, the external influence on constructing new place-specific stories is also questioned, suggesting a stronger focus on socially engaging processes within complex landscapes of rapid change. The example of Komafest shows that art can contribute to hope and creative processes by relating sensitively to place-specific situations and ongoing place-making activities. Further research on the topic is suggested with a stronger emphasis on the connection between socially engaging art and planning within a place-making and landscape context.  




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