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Hope It Will Not Terrify
Conny Karlsson Lundgren

“Thank you for answering my questions so kindly. I was hoping to join a gathering Saturday evening but I was hindered by the Sun.”

On June 6th, 1973 a short letter was sent to the newly founded RFSL Umeå in the north of Sweden. The local branch of the Swedish federation for LGBTQ rights was then the northern-most organized meeting place in Sweden and covered a huge area including the provinces of Västerbotten, Norrbotten, as well as parts of Ångermanland and Lappland.

Hope It Will Not Terrify is a performative translation of the text fragment that depicts a journey and a life in the hidden. In simple words, the correspondent reflects on the need for closeness and social context, but at the same time, a fear of trying. The film initiates a political gesture, an austere dialogue between a newly retired woman of Finnish origin with experience of language through her work with SFI (Swedish For Immigrants) and a younger man, an asylum seeker who due to his LGBTQ-identity has been forced to leave his home in North-Eastern Africa. Both find themselves in Västerbotten as a result of whom they love. With translations between Swedish, English, and Amharic, the letter writer’s short but life-altering journey is embodied through their contemporary experiences.

Hope It Will Not Terrify was created as part of The White House, a project initiated by Konstfrämjandet (People’s Movement for Art Promotion) Västerbotten in collaboration with Västerbotten Museum.

Keywords LGBTQ, Queer, Characters
Aspect ratio 1.78:1 (16:9)
Prod. format Generic HD-video
Duration 00:13:40
Language English & Swedish & Amharic
Color Color
Sound Stereo
Year 2016
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About the artist

Conny Karlsson Lundgren

Conny Karlsson Lundgren (b. Västervik) is a visual artist based in Stockholm and Hoby Mosse, Sweden.

With the help of film, text, image, and archival documents, his work traverses the boundaries between social, political, and private identities. Turning to interdisciplinary methods, alternative realities and social agreements are reimagined through experiences, contrapositions, desires, and secret codes. The ephemeral, accidental traces and moments that challenge existing narratives are a reoccurring fascination, with attention to the archive as both carrier of information and a mechanism of control. Karlsson Lundgren holds an MFA from Valand Academy of Fine Arts in Gothenburg, Sweden and participated in the Studio Research Program at Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, The Netherlands (2014–2015). In recent years his work has been exhibited at Moderna Museet Malmö, Extra City Kunsthal Antwerp, Gothenburg Art Museum, Kunsthal Nikolaj Copenhagen, with solo presentations at Neue Galerie Innsbruck, Haninge Konsthall, and Kalmar Art Museum (both Sweden). Karlsson Lundgren is the Swedish Arts Grants Committee’s International Program (IASPIS) studio grant holder at ISCP in New York City for 2020–2021.