The Finnish artist Carina Ahlskog and I were invited to a biennale in Ii, Finland. We had never seen each other or been talking but for 1,5 years we had been writing emails to each other regularly. For 3 x 2 hours we sat in a tent together before we were allowed to take the blindfolds off and were allowed to look at each other and talk for the first time. 

I wrote this text after three hours in the tent 

“What does it mean to “know” another person? When do I get to know Carina Ahlskog ? Is it when I send her my words and thoughts as profoundly as I can (as I have been doing for the last 1,5 years) Is it when I meet her husband Micki Ahlskog who I presume knows her most of all people? Is it when her arm touches mine when we are getting photographed in our blindfolds? Or when sitting in the car (still blindfolded) and I take my boots off and she can feel the smell of my feet for the first time? Is it when we sit silently in the tent and invite others to sit with us? The fact that I trust and feel her beautiful presence during the 3 hours we are there together? Or when I can feel her movements in the tent just close to me? Is it when she gets to hear the sound of me sniffling because my eyes refuse to stop watering under the blindfold? Maybe when my stomach is growling? Or will it be today when we after 3 more hours in the tent get to look each other in the eyes and listen to the sound of our voices, the Swedish and the Finnish-Swedish?”

The audience were very moved by this performance, people started to cry and so did we.

Photos by Micki Ahlskog