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Studio grant holders in Stockholm 1 October 2019 – 31 March 2020

Björn Karlsson and Nasim Aghili. Nasim Aghili 1980, Tehran. Björn Karlsson 1976, Stockholm. Based in Stockholm.

aghili/karlsson (Nasim Aghili and Björn Karlsson) create performances and installations, often in public spaces. Our projects address experiences of living in various kinds of exile, and how power reproduces ungrievability. Thus, our work often takes the form of healing rituals, enacting and making grievability. Recently, we have been involved in international projects that explore radical gardening, civil disobedience and the aesthetics of sisterhood, mainly in North America, with artists, activists and collectives whose work involves various forms of decolonising practices.

aghili/karlsson, Photo: Ricard Estay, Statens Konstråd

At Iaspis, we want to work on a series of performances (spatial and digital) that will be attempt to articulate strategies for communication and artistic practices based on an idea of community and alternative reality practices – which separately, but mainly together, generate a different logic than the prevailing neo-liberal, individualistic, heterosexual and colonial one that we take for granted as being inevitable. We will explore the American philosopher Jack Halberstam’s ideas on queer anarchy and Aesthetics of Chaos, to identify artistic strategies for disrupting the current order. We will produce site-specific and participative performance works, and our studio at Iaspis will be both the scene and meeting place for participants and collaborations. During our time at Iaspis, we will invite other artists, including the Mexican artist and rapper Vreni Michelini Castillo (based in Oakland, where he operates under the name of Chhoti Maa).

MFA from Konstfack and BA from Stockholm University, Theatre Studies.
Our works have been shown in Sweden, Puerto Rico, Mexico, USA, France, Estonia, Norway and Sapmi, as exhibitions, touring performances and works in public spaces. Our most recent activities include the permanent work şaneşîn (Hässelby, Stockholm), based on a collaboration with the community organisation Rådet av Enade Kreoler and the Public Art Agency Sweden’s initiative Art is Happening, and Shoresh – The Ground is On Fire, a site-specific performance featured for the first time at the Highways Performance Space in Los Angeles.