12 October - 15 December 2019
100% FOREIGN? Writes itself into Denmark's history as the first project to collect personal reports from citizens, which statistically represents the 167.000 people with refugee backgrounds that have come to the country since 1956 from a total of 40 different countries. Participants are selected based on figures obtained from Statistics Denmark in terms of country of origin, gender, year of arrival and family reunification. Some numbers are rounded down while others are rounded up to reach 1%. The collected and displayed material has the form of texts and staged images.
The first 100 portraits were exhibited in Copenhagen in spring 2017. On its Denmark tour until 2019, the project 100% FOREIGN? has collected new portraits from each of the 20 cities that the exhibition visits. The audience will thus meet tales in text and image from 250 Danish citizens with refugee background when 100% FOREIGN? at the end of the tour visits the KunstCentret Silkeborg Bad. Thus, the story of Denmark is updated with nuanced, diverse and personal stories of and about Danish citizens with refugee background - stories about being human in Denmark today. All portraits are gathered continuously in the live archive www.100pctfremmed.dk.
It becomes harder and harder to create a story that is characteristic of Denmark and at the same time community creating. Perpetrators regularly try to capture the Danishness through references to a special kind of food, leisure activities, historical events and Danish landscapes, but it is seldom that we ask those who the Danishness debate is about what they mean. During the exhibition period, some of the portrayed former refugees will come and contribute with their history and in take part in debate and teaching events. As one of the participants says:
"It's important for me to have the opportunity to meet people face to face all over the country and use my voice as a refugee and as a human being. Basically, I feel at home in Denmark, but it affects me when I feel like being stamped as a stranger. Personal meetings are the best means of moving the stereotypes, "says Manilla Ghafuri, 24, who came from Afghanistan in 2001.
100% FOREIGN? shows diversity and that in Denmark today there are very different tales of being human here, and that nationality is only one of many reasons to feel foreign.
The documentary art project is a urban exhibition, but in conjunction with the presentation at the Art Center Silkeborg Bad, attention will also be focused on how to tell in a different way and get some other things by using artistic grip in a project.
"In the visual arts, the landscape is traditionally used as a visual backdrop and representative of the Danish national identity. 100% FOREIGN? refers to the tradition by portraying the participants in landscape motifs characteristic of the 20 cities, often with cultural history and national-global relations. For example, at the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde, Dybbøl Banke in Sønderborg and the beach in Skagen. In this way, the project contributes with a contemporary narrative about Denmark in addition to the classic national romantic production", explains photographer and curator Maja Nydal Eriksen.
The Metropolis / Copenhagen International Theater is behind the project together with curator and photographer Maja Nydal Eriksen. The Denmark Tour takes place thanks to support from the Nordea Foundation.
See video with one of the participants in "100% Foreign?" here