LB°24 Participants

Lena Stenberg

Lena Stenberg, Flyttzon, 2024. Installation view in Kiruna. The Luleå Biennial 2024. Photo: Thomas Hämén

Lena Stenberg (b. 1961, Kiruna, Sápmi/Sweden) is an artist that lives and works in Kiruna, Sweden.

On view in Kiruna

Flyttzon, 2024

Tension band, wood rule, birch and rowan, tree branches.

Commissioned as a part of I Händelsernas Centrum and presented in the framework of Luleåbiennalen 2024.

Nestled among the trees in Kiruna's historic city centre, Flyttzon, a commissioned site-specific installation by artist Lena Stenberg stands fiercely, creating an interesting contrast with its surrounding environment. Flyttzon is part of a series of works that Stenberg has developed in recent years, where the artist explores the iconic imagery of traditional houses, disrupting their main components, such as windows, doors, roofs, floors, and overall materiality. The series examines how notions of home and belonging are generated through the interconnection of architecture, the natural environment, and the climatic and cultural conditions that shape both, and in turn, shape the lives and habits of the humans dwelling in them.

In Kiruna, a town amid one of the world's most audacious urban relocation projects driven by ground subsidence and expanding mining activities, these themes of home and belonging take on added resonance. Flyttzon references Kiruna’s typical wooden houses, but it's missing roof, closed windows, and doors serve as a poignant echo of the complexities inherent in this evolving urban displacement, where the entire old city centre is being relocated approximately 3 kilometres to the east, with many buildings being relocated, and demolished.

A few metres away from Flyttzon stands Kiruna’s oldest and largest wooden building, an iconic architectural landmark, a place of gathering, worship and faith constructed between 1909 and 1912. Kiruna’s historically significant church has been one of the most sensitive buildings in the town’s relocation project, and because of that, it still stands in Kiruna’s old centre waiting its planned move in one piece in 2025. Just as Kiruna grapples with the dichotomy between embracing its future and its past, the artwork embodies the tensions that are revealed in the midst of looming developments, where questions of progress meet those of preservation and remembrance.

Lena Stenberg (1961, Sápmi/Sweden) works primarily with three-dimensional works, sculptural objects, installations and photography. She often works from old documents and photographic archives, always with a connection to her own personal history. Since 1991, she has participated in group and solo exhibitions, sculpture parks and land art projects at, among others, ArkDes, Samiskt senter for samtidskunt, Bodö art association and others.

Supported by

The European Union
The Swedish Board of Agriculture
Leader Tornedalen 2030
Kiruna Municipality