Gammalt språk – nya former och flyktingar

In the installation Gammalt språk – nya former och flyktingar (Dološ giella – ođđa hápmi ja báhtareaddjit), formed by large wooden sculptures, Aage Gaup manifests his interest in visual language, such as the symbols found on the Nåjd drums. In this exhibition, he also shows small charcoal drawings, sketched by a child’s hand and forever linked to a hidden trauma.

Om Gammalt språk – nya former och flyktingar

Lihkuhisvouhta; Lihkku; Biegg-oimmoš; Bahádahkki, 2018. Wood.

Bearráigeahčči, Báhtareaddjit, Boddu, 2018. Charcoal drawing on painted wood.

A part of the installation Dološ giella – ođđa hápmi ja báhtareaddjit (Gammalt språk – nya former och flyktingar) Johtin/Reisen, 1989. Wood, root, reindeer skin.

Aage Gaup has been working as an artist and set designer since the early 1970s. He was a member of the legendary Masi group which was the forerunner of the Sami Artists’ Association formed in 1979, which later established Sámi Dáiddaguovddáš in 1986. On display at Välkommaskolan is an installation of large wooden sculptures he made for the exhibition Old Language – New Forms and Refugees, 2018, at Sámi Dáiddaguovddáš (Sami Centre for Contemporary Art) in Karasjok, Norway. Here Gaup manifests his interest in the visual language found, for example, among the symbols on the ornate drums of the Sami shamans known as Nåjder. If the symbols are already three-dimensional, their language constitutes a kind of fourth dimension. Gaup’s knowledge of scenography is apparent in the light and sound design that accompanies the sculptures developed in collaboration with Halvdan Nedrejord (sound) and Kurt Hermansen (light).

The charcoal drawings are based on drawings Aage Gaup found when cleaning out his mother’s old house. The drawings illustrate Aage and his mother’s flight to Áiterohtu during World War II, where Gaaup’s grandparents lived in their traditional goahti huts. But the Germans caught up with the young family and they were forcibly deported to southern Norway. The small drawings were on the back of some Christmas cards and on the page of a calendar; an ephemeral testimony to a hidden trauma.

About Aage Gaup

Aage Gaup (b. 1943, Børselv) is an artist and set designer based in Karasjok.

Find the artwork

Puoitakvägen 1, Malmberget, Sverige