KLEMET
Ketil Born

KLEMET

BJORNADAL ARKITEKTSTUDIO AS as Architects

The project is located under the mountainrange Okstindan in Northern Norway. The mountainrange with it´s glacier is a central natural form visible both from the sea and the inland. The peak of Oksskolten is the highest in Northern Norway andthe short distance from the mountain to the sea is one of the most stunning features of this region.


The region has two main cultures,both being very close to nature. One based on fishing and farming, cultivating the land, and one more nomadic, based on hunting and reindeer using it´s resources according to seasons. The shaman Klemet was caught in between this cultures.


We have two main traditional trading routes meeting in this region. The tradingroutes by sea going north south, trading fish and goods as south as Portugal and up to the Russian border, following the costal landscape which is much the same all the way thanks to the Gulf Stream. Also worth mentioning is the boat builders situated in the valley, making boats that could ship all the way to Newfoundland.


The traditional Sami land routes aremoving east west, along the rivers of Sweden and all the way into Russia. Okstindan is considered a holy mountain by the Sami’s and places of offering has revealed jewelry from Russia.


All this is made possible by the short connection between mountain and sea. The coastal landscape and the mountain landscape slowly becoming part of the forestbelt going all the way through Sweden, Finland and Russia to the Pacific Ocean.This meeting of landscapes is also the point were the two cultures meet and unfolding the drama about Klemet and the farmers.


After the withdrawal of the glaciers in Scandinavia, valleys and tundra were bared for cultivation. The glacier revealed fertile land, but also big rocks brought by the glacier. One of these rocks was used as shelter for the nomadic Sami. The Sami natives had an understanding of the landscape that we lack in our modern society. This is the landscape that was the basis of the interplay between the two cultures.


Around year 1900 the shaman Klemet was living in between the Okstindan glacier on the mountains and the farmers in the valley. He was a Sami, torn between living the traditional nomadic Sami way of life and the life of the farmers. Despite living as an outcast under a rock “heller”, his memory among the farmers is still very strong. Not many years ago the “heller” was blown to pieces in an act of cultural sabotage. The spirit of Klemet had never left the farmers in peace.


The river running from the glacier was part of shaping the valley, and it also created a natural amphitheater that we used as location for the play. On this site, we had the concept of placing a circle in the form of aSami drum as the theater stage. The drum carries the drama into creation. The traditional southern Sami drum had figures moving from the upper world, the human world and the underworld, but in contrary to the northernSami drums these figures moved in circles.This also mirrors in the femininedramaturgy of the play, where the drama unfolds in circles slowly revealing the story.


The landscape becomes part of the theater through different layers


1) The mountains and the valley making up the backdrop


2) The river encircling the stagearea and making up the background sound


3) The slope making the natural amfi


4) The drum making up the stage


5) The towers that are the sticks of the shaman drum casting light and sound into the play and overlooking the audience as a reminder of some greater power. The construction material is recycled from abandoned houses.


6) Haystacks representing the farmers’ natural habitat - cultivating the earth. Multiple function in the play acting as houses, fences, curtains and in general backing up the choreographyand Heller originating from the cultural landscape acting ac – haystacks is the cultivation of the landscape – Heller is the natural knowledge of the landscape


7) The Heller - The stone under which Shaman Klemet lived. This is the magical object where Klemet found his home, and which subsequently was blown to pieces in a cultural sabotage. Realized as a mixture of glacier, stone and traditional Sami building techniques.


8) Seating made of tree stumps from local sawmills.


KLEMET


Environmental theater scene in Hemnes, Norway for a play about the dramatic life of a powerful Sami shaman Klemet turning the whole valley into a shaman drum.


Around year 1900 the shaman Klemet was living in between the Okstindanglacier on the mountains and the farmers in the valley. He was a Sami, torn between living the traditional nomadic Samiway of life and the life of the farmers. Despite living as an outcast under a rock “heller”, his memory among the farmers is still very strong. Not many years ago the “heller” was blown to pieces in an act of cultural sabotage. The spirit of Klemet had never left the farmers in peace.


The environmental drama of the Klemettheater play aims into the psychological liberation of the valley. The whole community was playing a part, either as actors or producers of the play.


Shaman Klemet lived with his wife and children under a rock in a nest built of moss, trees and grass following the local knowledge of the Sami environmental building techniques. His rock, the “heller”, was one of many in the valley left behind by the retreating Okstindan glacier during the ice-age. Klemets rock even had running water – a stream conveniently running from the glacier above.


Thescenography moves freely in-between land-art and theatre following Shaman Klemets life, which was a constant environmental drama tied with the visual and subconscious layers of nature and human nature as part of nature.The stage opens up in different layers: the natural stage is the surrounding mountains, farms and the river running down from the glacier. This natural setting is focusing on a temporary collage of a constructed stage setting with elements from Klemet’s life and the life of the villagers. All the construction materials used in play are recycled from the valley.


Stage towers These are the sticks of the shaman drum casting light and sound into the play and overlooking the audience as a reminder of some greater power. The construction material is recycled from abandoned houses.


Haystacks Representing the farmers’ natural habitat - cultivating the earth. Multiple function in the play acting as houses, fences, curtains and in general backing up the choreography.


Heller The stone under which ShamanKlemet lived.This is the magical object where Klemet found his home, and which subsequently was blown to pieces in a cultural sabotage. Realized as a mixture of glacier, stone and traditional Sami buildingtechniques.


Seats Made of tree stumps from local sawmills.


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